The San Francisco 49ers should know plenty about their newest cornerback.
Perrish Cox, recently acquitted in a sexual assault case, played for 49ers secondary coach Ed Donatell in Denver. Cox started nine games for the Broncos as a rookie in 2010. He missed the 2011 season while the court case played out.
The 49ers, who announced Cox's signing to a two-year deal, can use young depth in their secondary with Carlos Rogers about to hit free agency.
Donatell's connection gives them first-hand knowledge of Cox and the character concerns associated with him dating to Cox's career at Oklahoma State. Signing Cox to a modest two-year contract gives the 49ers an opportunity to evaluate him without financial risk. And if Cox runs into trouble again, the team can release him.
The details of the sexual assault case reflect negatively on Cox even in the absence of a conviction. Cox said he emerged from the experience with humility.
"I don't blame nobody but myself," he said during a conference call with reporters on Tuesday. "I take full responsibility for my actions."
The attorney for Cox's accuser maintained after the trial that Cox was guilty and lied about his actions. Cox, speaking Tuesday, said he "just wants everyone involved in it to go on with their lives."
Cox also said he would avoid putting himself in compromising positions.
"From here on out, I will show it," he said.
Back in 2010, when Cox was entering the draft, Scouts Inc. analysts Steve Muench and Kevin Weidl noted that Cox's stock had suffered following a curfew-related suspension. Their report specifically raised concerns about Cox and tackle Anthony Davis, a player the 49ers coincidentally drafted in the first round that year.
Cox was a fifth-round pick in Denver.