Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

Why 49ers’ Mike McGlinchey feels more prepared to go against Broncos’ Von Miller

Aug 14, 2019 at 9:33 AM--

It's been eight months since the San Francisco 49ers beat the Denver Broncos during Week 14 of the regular season. You know, the game where George Kittle ended up five yards shy of breaking Shannon Sharpe's single-game record for receiving yards by a tight end. It's okay; Kittle would go on to break another tight end record later in the season. He'll be fine.

It's also when the 49ers tackles got to tussle with Broncos pass rushers Von Miller and Bradley Chubb. Chubb got to Nick Mullens twice while Miller brought him down another time.

Then-rookie Mike McGlinchey said he was excited for the opportunity to go against two of the best in the game. General manager John Lynch wasn't too sure "excited" should have been the right word.

"I was a little nervous when he was talking about being excited to play against Von Miller," Lynch said during the week after the game. "'Be careful, buddy. This guy is different.' You know what? He held his own. He really played well.

"I think you've got to be pretty courageous to — it's one thing to feel it, but to go say it in the papers, I was ready to go say, 'Hold on buddy.' But he did, and he really played well. I commend him for that."

McGlinchey sounds equally excited to once again go against players like Miller and Chubb when the 49ers practice with the Broncos on Friday and Saturday, and then play in an exhibition game on Monday night.

McGlinchey, who joined KNBR on Tuesday, said he feels even more prepared than he did last year. Some of that has to do with him no longer being a rookie. A lot has to do with some of the 49ers' offseason additions.

"It's another great opportunity, but I think I'm more prepared this year than I was last year," McGlinchey said on the "Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks" show. "Not only having a whole year under my belt but the last three or four weeks, I've been training against Dee Ford and Nick Bosa, and I'm pretty confident they're just as good as anybody in the NFL."

Injuries have recently sidelined both players. Still, the time McGlinchey did have to work against the two pass rushers has been invaluable. Ford has recorded double-digit sacks during two of his last three seasons. Bosa is considered to be one of the more polished pass rushers to come out of college in recent years.

Still, the Broncos pass rushers are no slouches themselves. Miller and Chubb combined for 26.5 sacks last season, so the work McGlinchey will get against them in the coming days will be beneficial.

"We'll be ready for them" McGlinchey continued, "It's going to be fun. It's always good to get new faces and new schemes to go up against. The more that you can see and the more you can experience, the better you're going to be down the line.

"And I think it's going to be huge for our football team because they have such a good defense, and Coach (Vic) Fangio has been world-renowned in what he's been able to do with some football teams, starting with here a couple of years ago."

McGlinchey went on to give his evaluation of Bosa, a rookie whom the 49ers drafted with the No. 2 overall pick in April.

"His just feel for the game of football; I think that's what separates him," McGlinchey explained. "He's obviously a phenomenal athlete. Strong, fast, the whole package there. But he's such a fine-tuned rusher, which you don't see in a lot of even the elite guys. A lot of the elite guys are still just speed-heavy, power-heavy, stuff like that.

"This kid knows exactly what he's doing based off what you're giving him. He can feel my weight being outside. He can feel me being dominant with one hand versus the other. And his hand-eye coordination to catch them and kind of work them against you is really what makes him special.

"I think he's going to have a huge year for us. Hopefully, we can get him back on the field here soon after the ankle thing he's got going on, but the sky's the limit for him. He's going to be a special player for us this year and then hopefully for the next 10 to 15."

You can listen to the entire interview with McGlinchey below.

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