Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Bosa’s performance during 49ers vs. Browns is the standard, not the exception, says John Lynch

Oct 11, 2019 at 9:11 AM--

A healthier Nick Bosa is bad news for opposing quarterbacks. The San Francisco 49ers rookie defensive end looks like he is getting better the further removed he becomes from that training camp ankle injury. He looked impressive during Monday night's win over the Cleveland Browns and was disruptive in the backfield throughout the game.

It also helps that Bosa received more playing time than in previous games.

"I think he had more opportunities," head coach Kyle Shanahan said after the game. "He hasn't been playing a ton. He's been playing situationally, and tonight, I think he got to play a lot more."

The intention was always to have Bosa play more. His injury had slowed him up until this point. But was Monday night's performance indicative of what fans should expect out of the first-year defender going forward, or was it just an exceptional primetime performance?

General manager John Lynch joined KNBR on Friday morning and was asked that question.

"I think that's the standard now," Lynch responded on the "Murph and Mac" show.

The 49ers GM thinks the team took the right approach — a cautious one — with Bosa and now has someone who can impact every game down the stretch. That's good news for a defensive unit that could not generate a significant pass rush in recent years.

"I think his health, the ability to turn early on that ankle, the bye week really did him wonders," Lynch continued, "and he came out and played like -- that was a special effort. It really was. That's the type of player he can be, though, consistently."

Now, the 49ers head into their first division matchup of the season, an NFC West showdown against the Los Angeles Rams in Southern California. Lynch knows Sean McVay is an intelligent game planner and will likely have wrinkles inserted to disrupt the 49ers' rookie pass rusher and give quarterback Jared Goff a fighting chance.

"He's going to have guys chipping," Lynch said. "He's going to have tight ends with presence on him. He's going to have people coming across formations. All those things."

Of course, that's why Lynch and San Francisco put so much emphasis on building a dominant defensive line. You can't just focus on one player. The unit boasts five former first-round picks in Bosa, Dee Ford, DeForest Buckner, Arik Armstead, and Solomon Thomas. That makes things difficult for the opposition.

"The nice thing and the way we build this line is, OK, well, you've got Dee Ford on the other side," Lynch explained. "So you try to pick your poison, and whatever you do, we've got an answer for it.

"But Nick is an incredibly talented football player. I think Kyle is exactly right. We felt like he played at a very high level the first three games. It kind of went unnoticed because he didn't finish. He left a lot of sacks out there. I mean, this guy could legitimately have 10 sacks right now. He kind of fell off a bunch earlier in the year."

You can listen to the entire conversation with Lynch below.

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