San Francisco 49ers, Def, 49ers
|Def - #28||SF||Active||0' 0||0|
2016 Outlook:Last updated on Jul-27-2016 by Shawn Childs
San Fran finished fourth in the NFL in rushing yards allowed (1535) with 11 TDs. Ball carriers gained 3.9 yards. The 49ers only allowed five runs of 20 yards or longer and none over 40 yards.
They ranked 7th in passing yards allowed (3536) with 19 TDs and 18 Ints. Their defensive line had 38 sacks with QBs gaining only 6.5 yards per attempt.
NT Quinton Dial was a league average player in both run and pass blocking. He'll battle NT Ian Williams for the starting job. Williams had his best season in the league with strength against the run and minimal value in sacks (1). DE Arik Armstead was a neutral player in his rookie season after the 49ers selected him in the first round. Arik has upside in the pass rush with the ability to disrupt the run game. He still needs to improve his pass rushing technique while developing his vision. Rookie DE DeForest Buckner was San Francisco's first pick in this season draft. Just like Armstead, Buckner has ties to Kelly at Oregon. DeForest is a power player with upside rushing the QB plus his game projects well in run support.
LB NaVorro Bowman missed the 2014 season with a torn ACL in his left knee. In 2015, he offers an edge as a run defender with limited value in sacks (2.5). LB Gerald Hodges was acquired last October from the Vikings. He struggled in all areas last year. LB Aaron Lynch did a nice job for the 49ers in his second season in the league. He finished with 6.5 sacks with some strength against the run. LB Ahmad Brooks has value rushing the QB, but his looks to be past his prime at age 32 with risk defending the run.
CB Tramaine Brock and CB Jimmie Ward were both about league average in coverage. Ward graded well in run support while Brock has risk defending the run. Jimmy was drafted in the first round in 2014. S Antoine Bethea struggled in the passing game while having success defending the run. He missed the last nine games of the season with a torn pectoral muscle. His game is trending backward. SS Antoine Bethea struggled in the passing game with value defending the run. He missed the last nine games of the season with a torn pectoral muscle. S Eric Reid is also a first round draft pick (2013). Reid was a neutral player in pass coverage while needing to improve his game against the run.
There is talent on this defense plus a couple of players who look to be at the end of their career. Overall, they played well in 2015, and their key players will have more experience in 2016. The 49ers defense will have Fantasy value at times, but their success will be tied to improved play by the defensive line. I'd rather own them as my second defense if possible.
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