The Seahawks have signed to a one-year contract former 49ers CB Tramaine Brock, who was cleared of domestic violence charges last week in Santa Clara, CA. He was signed for the minimum for a seven-year player, $900,000. He made $2.7 million last season.
Brock, who will be 29 Sunday, spent his career with the 49ers, who released him April 7 after he was arrested on suspicion of felony domestic violence and child endangerment charges against the girlfriend and mother of his two children in Santa Clara, CA.
The Santa Clara County district attorney’s office in June accused Brock of punching his 31-year-old girlfriend in the face and attempting to strangle her on different occasions. It said the disagreement began over what to watch on television. Brock pleaded not guilty.
But the case was dismissed last week during a preliminary hearing. The district attorney’s office said that Brock’s former girlfriend declined to cooperate. ProFootballTalk.com reported the lawyer for the woman issued a statement that her client refused to testify and said that she and Brock had a verbal altercation rather than a physical one.
Although criminal charges have been dropped, Brock still could be disciplined by the NFL. The 49ers said they were not interested in re-signing him.
Brock issued a statement of apology Friday:
“I would like to formally apologize to my family and children for the verbal altercation that brought about this situation.These past 5 months have been a time to reevaluate and grow as a person. I had hoped to keep family matters private, but at this time I have to get the facts out. I have never put my hands on the mother of my children, as what has been publicly reported. The information in the police report is untrue. I stayed in an unhealthy relationship for the sake of my children, which was not in my best interest. As the case I was involved in has been dismissed, I am eager to move forward and focus on sharing custody of my two children and ensuring a stable environment for them.
Lastly, I look forward to continuing my football career in the near future.
Brock’s only tryout after being released was with the Seahawks.
After practice Thursday, coach Pete Carroll offered up a staunch defense regarding acquiring Brock.
“What I would say to you is that I don’t know how anybody could have done a more extensive look into this,” Carroll said. “(GM John Schneider) started this quite some time ago and followed it throughout to make sure we knew exactly what was going on. I’m not going into particulars for you, but we feel assured that we’ve done all of the homework that can be done and done a little bit past that and then maybe past that.
“So we’re happy to have him on the club and the team and he’s thrown into competition.”
Carroll, who said Brock will see action Friday, was asked if the Seahawks interviewed the alleged victim.
“I’m not going to go into that,” he said. “There’s a million questions you could ask me about that, but we’ve done everything that you can do. All I can say is a comprehensive look into it, and I feel great to tell you that. There’s too many aspects of it to go into that we talked about specifically.”
After practice Wednesday, Brock met with the media and was asked what happened with his girlfriend.
“It was just a misunderstood situation, because I wasn’t even at the house at the time,” he said. “But the process and everything is under the rug, and I’m moving forward from that situation.
Asked whether he expects punishment from the NFL, he said, “I mean, we kind of handled the situation. I mean, I really don’t know. But, I feel confident that nothing will happen.”
He said he expected a mixed reaction from fans.
“I’m not afraid,” he said. “Everyone is going to have their opinions. Some people are going to think I did something, and there’s going to be some people that aren’t going to think that.”
The seven-year veteran (5-10, 197 pounds), who started 31 of 32 games over the past two seasons, has 11 interceptions and 45 passes defensed. He’s a candidate to start at the corner position opposite Richard Sherman. The spot was occupied last year primarily by Deshawn Shead, who is still recovering from knee surgery following an ACL tear in the playoff game against Atlanta. He won’t be ready for the season’s start.
Veteran Jeremy Lane had been penciled in as the starter, but missed Friday’s first preseason game with a mild groin injury. He’s expected back for Friday’s game at the Clink against Minnesota.
Backing up Lane was well-regarded rookie Shaquill Griffin, but his inexperience showed in the 48-17 win over the Chargers Sunday. Other backups, DeAndre Elliott in the nickel and Neiko Thorpe and Pierre Desir on the outside, also lack Brock’s experience.
The Seahawks haven’t had much success with veteran corners stepping into the secondary because of the way the Seahawks teach the position. Cary Williams and Antoine Winfield were signed as free agents in recent years, but Winfield didn’t make it out of preseason and Williams was cut late in the regular season.