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49ers select CB Dontae Johnson in fourth round of the NFL Draft

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The 49ers drafted CB Dontae Johnson from NC State with their second 4th-round draft pick of the 2014 NFL Draft. Johnson is an athletic cornerback who becomes the sixth player added to the 49ers from this draft.

Safety-receiver who also played basketball as a New Jersey prep. Played in 13 games (one start) as a true freshman for North Carolina State in 2010 and had 22 tackles, one pass breakup and zero interceptions. His first career start came at free safety against Boston College. Also returned three kickoffs for 40 yards (13.3-yard average). Played primarily as a nickel defender in '11, appearing in 13 games (two starts) and tallying 27-4-0 with three tackles for loss and three sacks. Moved to the boundary cornerback starting slot in '12 and recorded 70-8-0 with six tackles for loss, one sack and one forced fumble. Teamed with Redskins '13 second-rounder David Amerson to make up the tallest pair of starting cornerbacks in the country. Opened '13 at cornerback before switching back to free safety midway through the year. In 12 games (five starts at cornerback, seven at safety), he totaled 82-5-3.

Johnson is a big-bodied CB at 6-2, 200 pounds who is athletic enough to battle opposing WRs. He has the versatility to play as a safety or cornerback if needed. Secondary coach Ed Donatell can plug him in at any position he desires, but he will require some coaching.

Some experts view Johnson as more of an athlete than football player, but played nickel CB, safety, cornerback and on special teams while in college. He will join a mix of Jimmie Ward, Chris Culliver, Perrish Cox, Chris Cook and Eric Wright for playing time behind Tramaine Brock on the depth chart.


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