Young, 24, has five sacks on the season, and has posted career highs in areas like pass-rush win rate in 2023, looking to reach his pre-injury form.
While the defensive end is on an expiring deal and will likely command a fairly high salary on the open market in 2024, the 49ers didn’t pay much for Young’s services, and will look to integrate him into the team this week ahead of their Week 10 matchup against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Speaking to the media for the first time since the trade, Young shared his excitement for joining a winning culture, which he can already sense during his first days in the building.
“Got in here last week. Just the culture, the vibe is a lot, you know,” Young said. “I definitely know that I’m in the building with winners.”
“It’s definitely exciting. Definitely gives me another [jolt] of motivation just to go out and do my best and to play every play like it’s my last.”
In addition to joining a winning culture in San Francisco, Young will also re-connect with fellow defensive end Nick Bosa, who was his college teammate at Ohio State.
Young recalled the moment that the duo shared following the trade, sharing the excitement of playing together again, which the defensive end didn’t think was going to happen.
“Nick [has] always been a big brother to me, even at Ohio State,” Young said. “After [the trade] was official, it was literally like five minutes after they did it, he called me [and] it was a good moment.”
“Even in college, we never thought that we would ever be able to play with each other again. So, it’s a blessing.”
Now joining his former teammate at a new location, Young is looking forward to being around a player of Bosa’s caliber, joking that it’ll be a similar race to the quarterback as it was in college.
“I say Nick, if you know him and he’s consistent in everything he does, which is why he is the player that he is,” Young said. “And just seeing him go through Ohio State and the NFL now, what he does definitely is built off consistency. So, I’m glad to be around a guy of his caliber.”
“I think it’s going to be just like in college. It’s a race to the quarterback, kind of. And it’s different when you playing with your I guess we done played in college together so it’s going to be real fun.”
In joining the 49ers’ defensive line room, Young will now be under the tutelage of heralded defensive line coach Kris Kocurek, and the defensive end is already enjoying the experience.
“I love it,” Young said about Kocurek’s style. “Getting coached hard every day, the intensity he has, that that’s what everybody keeps telling me about.”
“He’s so intense and I love it. I love to be coached hard. Just going to make me go harder.”
While the NFL is much different than Ohio State, Young sees a resemblance between his current and former locker rooms, once again sharing his excitement for the opportunity with the 49ers.
“Just the players, the spirit in the locker room, [it’s] just different, you know what I’m saying,” Young said. “It’s like kind of that same thing at Ohio State where it’s like you’re expected to win and it’s just like that vibe of we’re going to win, you know what I’m saying? So it definitely reminds me not Ohio State, but obviously it’s the NFL.”
“These are grown men. So I’m just excited to be blessed with the opportunity to be this franchise,” Young said. “I see why they win. Just the details of each play, the details of my assignment, much more greater. So I see why they win.”
The 49ers will look to include Young into the fold on Sunday when they face off against the Jacksonville Jaguars on the road, hoping to turn things around after their three-game losing streak.