Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports


Packers coach Matt LaFleur discusses George Kittle, Nick Bosa, connections to 49ers

Nov 20, 2019 at 1:42 PM--


Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur has several connections to the San Francisco 49ers. His older brother is Mike LaFleur, the team's pass-game coordinator. He served as the quarterbacks coach under then-offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan in Washington and Atlanta. His former roommate is 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh. The two worked together as assistants at Central Michigan.

The list goes on.

LaFleur spoke with Bay Area reporters via a conference call on Wednesday. He has been impressed with what Saleh has done in San Francisco, bringing in a defense that was, at its core, the same one run by the Seattle Seahawks, and then making it his own.

"I think he's done a heck of a job with it," LaFleur said. "You talk about one of the more sound systems in this league; I think that's a big reason why they haven't given up big plays. It's extremely difficult to get those big plays on that defense. That's a credit to Robert and his staff, as well as there's some pretty damn good players on that side of the ball, too."

The Packers coach joked during the call that he tried reaching out to Saleh via text message this week, writing, "Hey, would you give me a call? I have a couple of questions about your defense."

Saleh, obviously, hasn't responded to that yet. Maybe he will on Monday.

As if the connections listed above weren't enough, LaFleur also revealed that his wife is the cousin of San Francisco's head strength and conditioning coach, Dustin Perry.

LaFleur went on to speak highly of two 49ers players, Pro Bowl tight end George Kittle and rookie defensive end Nick Bosa. Bosa will play on Sunday night. We probably won't learn more about Kittle's status until closer to game day.

The coach was asked about the difference Kittle's absence makes for the 49ers offense.

"Any time you take a playmaker of his level off the field, it makes a dramatic difference," LaFleur responded. "The one thing I respect so much about George Kittle is he is a complete football player. I think he is as good in the run game as he is in the pass game, and I think he's arguably the best tight end in the game."

Regarding Bosa, LaFleur says: "Some of the plays he's made are absolutely incredible. He's consistently in the backfield, disrupting both in the run and the pass game, and the motor on him is incredible.

"And it doesn't shock me because his brother is the same way. They're both going to go, and any time you get a talented player, as talented as he is, with a motor, that is a nightmare for an offense. I think that's why guys like that become future Hall of Famers."





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