NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero highlighted young NFL coaches who are on the radar to be a head coach in the coming years. Naturally, the list is filled with offensive minds as teams continue to search for “the next Sean McVay.”
49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans was the cover art of Pelissero’s article. Here’s the blurb on Ryans:
49ers DC DeMeco Ryans, 38:
The Vikings were so impressed with Ryans after his initial interview last January that they asked to fly him in for a second. Ryans responded by doing something that almost never happens: He declined, telling the team he felt he needed more time to develop. That speaks to the mentality and maturity of Ryans, a two-time Pro Bowler in his 10 seasons as an NFL linebacker who is now in his sixth year as a 49ers assistant and second as defensive coordinator. Despite a rash of injuries, Ryans’ unit shows up week after week, playing fast and physical. And he takes pride in impacting players on and off the field. His leadership traits outweigh his relative inexperience, and this could be Ryans’ year — if he decides he’s ready.
Would the Vikings 8-1 in an alternate universe where Ryans is their head coach?
Anyway, if he feels ready, DeMeco should have a few more opportunities this offseason. I’d love for him to go to a team with an established quarterback, although that’s much easier to say now in November.
The 49ers are eighth in defensive DVOA, 5th in EPA per play allowed, and first in defensive success rate. Teams are struggling to score against San Francisco outside of their opening drives. What makes Ryans’ so impressive is he’s having success without generating turnovers.
Talanoa Hufanga gave a great answer about what makes DeMeco a special coach:
I asked Talanoa Hufanga about DeMeco Ryans. He said if he could describe Ryans in one word it’s poise. He said DeMeco never flinches, no matter the score. Full answer: pic.twitter.com/UNjuUgUjqg— KP (@KP_Show) November 14, 2022
Even-keeled. That’s not easy to do, and speaks to how under control Ryans is. Nick Bosa added to that, saying DeMeco does a great job of listening to his players:
Nick Bosa on the same question. His answer was communication. He said Ryans will ask questions and more importantly listen to his players. pic.twitter.com/ATC1sTuNYH— KP (@KP_Show) November 14, 2022
Communication is the name of the game. You can know everything there is to know, but if you cannot get your message through to your players, then what good is your knowledge? That’s not an issue for the Niners defense.