Former Steelers cornerback Anthony Brown has signed to the San Francisco 49ers’ 53-man roster after a workout on Tuesday, the team announced. Brown, who the Steelers released off their practice squad last Thursday in reshuffling the deck in the secondary. Now, he latches onto a 53-man roster following that setback.
The 49ers are dealing with some injuries at cornerback. Ambry Thomas had a knee injury, and Samuel Womack suffered a knee injury that landed him on injured reserve. That opened up the spot for Brown to step into, and the veteran earned the gig over Bradley Roby, who visited the 49ers.
Brown, 29, was returning from a torn Achilles tendon that he suffered in Week 13 last year, which cost him the end of the 2022 season and prevented him from working with a team this summer.
He had been the starting cornerback in Dallas at the time of his injury. In his seven-year NFL career, Brown has played in 94 games and started 69, including 28 over the last two seasons for Dallas.
The 5-foot-11, 196-pound Brown has played both slot and outside corner in his career, though most of his recent work was outside. He played 591 of his 728 snaps outside in 2022 and 804 of his 1,046 there in 2021.
Brown’s health and ability to return to full capabilities after a severe injury were question marks, and he had not been with any other team since his release by Dallas early this offseason. It was hoped he was healthy enough to return to form and represent a serious upgrade to the team’s outside cornerback depth, which took a significant hit when rookie seventh-round pick Cory Trice was lost for the season with a knee injury.
Brown lasted just two weeks on the Steelers practice squad. Luq Barcoo, who had been released from that unit earlier in Week 2, replaced him last Thursday, but the team ended up with a vacancy on the 16-man squad in its series of moves.