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, schedule. They play the Arizona Cardinals, the Oakland Raiders, and the New York Giants in the next 3 weeks. All 4 teams have one win each and are positioned to be drafting early in next year’s draft. This was not a position the 49ers thought they would be in when the season started. The high hopes quickly faded after key players went down to injury and the team started playing poorly. There have been a few issues with the team’s play so far this season, but the most eye-opening is the offense giving the ball away. They have 18 turnovers on the season, 10 interceptions and 8 fumbles. C.J. Beathard has 7 interceptions and 5 fumbles in the 4 games he’s played. That is not acceptable as the team’s quarterback. He has to protect the football much better. The team is currently ranked last in turnover differential at -15. The offense turns the ball over and the defense has been unable to force their own turnovers. Another issue is the regression of some of the young players. Reuben Foster, Ahkello Witherspoon, and Adrian Colbert are having rough 2nd seasons. All 3 were supposed to be a big part of this team’s future. They showed flashes of good play last season Youth Brock Coyle Jersey
, but that has not been the case this season. Richard Sherman’s arrival forced quarterbacks to throw Witherspoon’s way and he has been to unable to replicate his play from last season. They are not the only ones not playing well, but they have taken the biggest steps back in their development and that is concerning moving forward. 49ers linksTheme of the season | Another player down (Cohn)That was always the goal of the season | Still focusing on the long-term (Chan)Mailbag questions (Inman)Still plenty of work to get done (Wagoner)The secondary has been terrible other than Richard Sherman | Worst in league on pass coverage (PFF)Draft positions should be decided in these games | Soft part of the schedule coming up (Madson)They are being exposed this season | Sophomore slumps (Chan)1-6 start (Fann)Welcome back Aaron | Aaron Burbridge back on the practice squad (49ers staff)Former 49ers speak to the current squad (Maiocco)Don’t think a trade will happen | Potential trades? (Biderman)Kap (Cohn)Battle of the one win teams (Madson)Not a good 2nd season for Reuben (Almquist)Burbridge is back (Madson) The San Francisco 49ers pass rush emerged in a big way last week against the Oakland Raiders. The team racked up seven sacks, with Cassius Marsh and Dekoda Watson combining for four of them. The Raiders are a bad football team, but entering the game, their offensive line was ranked in the middle of the pack in Football Outsiders’ adjusted sack rate.Marsh has shown talent since joining the team last year, but has been inconsistent in getting to the quarterback. Watson was primarily a special teams player in his first season with the 49ers, also serving as backup at the SAM linebacker spot. This offseason however White Mike McGlinchey Jersey
, the 49ers worked Watson into an edge rusher role. He was still a backup at SAM, but the team wanted to mix him into the LEO role.Watson suffered a hamstring tear in practice prior to Week 1, and was placed on injured reserve. He returned last week, and he credits weight loss for his big performance in Week 9. He went on a mostly vegetarian diet to cut from the low 270s to 246 pounds, which is closer to the kind of weight the smaller edge rushers can bring in this defense.Considering Watson spent the first half of the season on injured reserve, it would make sense he would be particularly fresh in his return to action. And facing players who had seven games under their belt, that would give him an edge. He’s 30 Youth DeForest Buckner Jersey
, so it’s hard to see him developing into something he has never really been before, but the thought is moderately intriguing.Watson is playing at a lower weight, and maybe that can put him in a position to at least modestly break out as a pass rusher. Through the first eight years of his NFL career, he had four total sacks. He has 1.5 sacks in his first game back, and he gets to face a bad New York Giants offensive line in Week 10. One more full sack will give him a single season career high. The rest of the season, the 49ers face some shaky offensive lines. After the Giants, they face the Bucs (currently 19th in adjusted sack rate) Jimmy Garoppolo jersey
, Seahawks twice (27th), Broncos (16th), Bears (14th), and Rams (8th). If the weight loss is actually giving him an extra speed edge, I’ve got to think he’s got at least one more sack in him.Watson is signed through the 2019 season. He’s not going to suddenly emerge as the dominant edge presence the 49ers will be building around for the future. But maybe he can provide a little something this season that provides some much needed depth next year if they invest a high draft pick or big bucks in an edge rusher.