While the offense was less than stellar in the San Francisco 49ers Sunday loss to the Minnesota Vikings, there were still some great takeaways. One of the best is one DeForest Buckner who began his campaign for defensive player of the year. And he’s already ahead of his competition. In fact, he’s ahead of a couple great defensive players — even if you combine their stats.
Combine the Monday Night Football stat lines for Los Angeles Rams defensive linemen Ndomakong Suh and Aaron Donald, and you get something that still doesn’t match Buckner’s performance against the Minnesota Vikings.
Aaron Donald and Ndamukong Suh combined:— Rob Lowder (@Rob_Lowder) September 11, 2018
1 tackle for loss
3 quarterback hits
3 tackles for loss#49ers
Yes, the Vikings are not the Raiders. But the 49ers defensive line is not the Rams defensive line, and after paying Donald all that money (as well as getting Suh who is a force in his own right) you’d think the Rams defensive line would feast on the Raiders.
Nah, just one sack. For Michael Brockers.
This really wouldn’t be near as necessary to talk about if it wasn’t for the fact that Buckner got no respect at all in the offseason as one of the best defensive linemen in the league. Most of the time he went unmentioned. On that note, we’ll need to see how he does for another 15 games before we can really riot over his lack of attention.
In any case, Buckner is off to a great start while the Rams defensive line is not.