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Film breakdown of DeForest Buckner vs. New York Jets

Taking a look at DeFo as he leads the way on defense in Week 14

NFL: New York Jets at San Francisco 49ers Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Its hard to get excited about much with the 49ers defense this year. We’ve heard good things about guys like DeForest Buckner and Arik Armstead this year but for me all I can think is, “we’ve drafted defensive line 1st round back to back years and we cant stop the run or generate a pass rush?” After looking at some game film and seeing what these guys are doing individually I think we do have something to be excited about in DeForest Buckner.

He led the way last week with 10 tackles, two sacks, and a QB hit while playing all defensive snaps. I wanted to take a look at some of his play and am really impressed with how hard he plays every down, despite his snap count. I think he has been pretty solid with his pass rush. I think his run defense has some room for improvement. The last five rushing touchdowns in the last two games have come off his side of the defensive line behind the LT/LG. I definitely do not think that is entirely his fault, but I am starting to wonder if it is a coincidence. But he is out there working hard every play and it is showing.

I put some GIFs of the jets game together. I apologize for the quality ahead of time. its a work in progress.

This is 9:14 in the 1st quarter. This is a perfect example of the type of play we are getting out of DeForest Buckner. You’ll see him come off the right edge, work his way all the way around the pocket, get back up field, and still get credited with part of the tackle.

This is 9:38 in the 3rd quarter. He is one-on-one with the left tackle on a three-man rush, and is in the backfield very quickly getting one of the two sacks with which he was credited.

1:57 in the 3rd quarter and you’re seeing the same effort you see in the first GIF. The Jets throw a screen left and DeFo is the first 49er out of the backfield making his way back into the play.

Here’s another example, 2:29 in the 4th quarter. The Jets toss the ball right, the play gets forced back inside, and Buckner comes off the right side of the D-line back around to make the solo tackle.

There’s not a lot to be excited about with the 49ers defense, but I think DeForest Buckner is one player to feel good about. He is putting forth the effort, and they clearly trust him to be out there. He is just a rookie and I think there is a lot of upside to him.