49ers already courting former Seahawk Richard Sherman

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Richard Sherman is spending his first day as a free agent with the San Francisco 49ers.

Sherman's release was a cost-cutting move. NFL.com reported that Sherman will take a physical with the 49ers Saturday to determine where he is in his recovery from an Achilles tendon injury suffered on November 9 against Arizona, a game that it appears will turn out to have been Sherman's last in a Seattle uniform.

No player more than Sherman reflected the intensity of the 49ers-Seahawks rivalry when the NFC West rivals jostled from 2011-13 was at its zenith.

Patriots fans hoping Richard Sherman would be on his way to New England woke up Saturday to some bad news.

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"I want to go to a contender", Sherman said Friday on KIRO radio in Seattle.

If healthy, Sherman, a four-time Pro Bowl selection who excels in physical man-to-man coverage, would be an ideal fit for the 49ers' 4-3 defense. But some players, including former Panthers defenders Jon Beason and Charles Godfrey, needed two seasons before they returned to their pre-Achilles surgery form.

Shaquill Griffin will return as the starter at right cornerback and the team is expected to tender restricted free agent Justin Coleman to return as the nickel corner. It is worth noting they have the most cap space in the National Football League, so having the money to sign Sherman should be no problem. He can now sign anywhere - including the Seahawks - without having to wait until the start of free agency on March 14. Prior to the injury, the 5-time Pro Bowler had never missed a game.

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