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Niners Nate-tion podcast: How Tartt’s return helps the defense

Arizona Cardinals v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images

The 49ers have brought back more unrestricted free agents than most of us anticipated. Trent Williams and Jason Verrett were expected, but players like D.J. Jones and Jaquiski Tartt were not.

San Francisco bringing back their veteran starters signals that the team believes in the core that they’ve built. It also signals that the Niners are ok with another year where injuries play a factor.

Nobody would argue that Tartt makes the defense better when he’s on the field. What Tartt did for the 49ers defense in 2019 was special. He allowed 2.0 yards per target, had a success rate that was second among all defensive backs at 75%, and, most importantly, was a terrific communicator.

I’d go as far as to say that San Francisco’s secondary played as big of a part as their pass rush did during 2019. When Tartt was on the field from Weeks 1-13, the Niners defense allowed 15 passing plays over 20 yards. When Tartt missed December, the defense allowed 15 passing plays over 20 yards. The defense’s success rate went from 35% in December, which led the NFL to 25th when Tartt missed the final month of the season.

In today’s episode, Niner Nate, Leo Luna, and special guest Jordan from 49ers Gold Mine discuss how Tartt returning to the Niners helps the defense. Leo references this play below and why communication is so important on defense:

You can stream the full episode below:

Other topics in today’s episode

  • How Ebukam will be used in Ryans’ defense
  • Leo’s crazy idea for slot WR and more!