In the last few days we have talked about Richard Sherman’s opinion of Nick Bosa and his 80% playing status while recovering from injury last season. We have talked for the last few months (years?) about the inability of our secondary. However, it is a couple other comments from Sherman’s interview that will help define the success of our defense this season.
“Not knowing how to finish, not having finishers” is what truly defined multiple losses for the 49ers last year. That is why Shanahan and Lynch spent the time stocking up on the defensive line yet again this offseason. The addition of Bosa and Dee Ford hopefully will give the 49ers the “guys needed to hit (the quarterback) in the face.” With a multitude of our own top draft picks along with Ford, the 49ers should finally be set on this front. These are the “finishers” that have taken the spotlight this offseason.
The comment that excited me though was “Fred (Warner) is a year older, he’s not a rookie play caller anymore.” When looking at our defense and all the additions heading into this season it has become easy to forget about the maturation of our other players. We are heading into Warner’s second season and have been putting the pieces in place to help him grow. Kwon Alexander’s arrival with his coverage skills (72.8 and 72.5 the last 2 seasons) should relieve pressure off Warner.
The 49ers have always been a team that was led from the LB position. We have had the fortune of watching Patrick Willis, Navorro Bowman, and Aldon Smith (for a few years) recently. For those of us who have been around for a while, we have gotten to enjoy Haley, Norton, Romanowski, and maybe even Wilcox, The one thing that all of these players had were defensive lines that could change games as well. Hopefully the new additions to our line allow Warner to elevate his game so he can sit alongside the greats who have played the LB position here. Let’s hope to see this maturation and quickly start calling Warner a “finisher.”
On to the links: