Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports


49ers defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans singles out three players ready to make a leap this season

Jun 2, 2021 at 3:29 PM--


The 49ers already have a slew of established veteran standouts on defense, with players such as Nick Bosa, Fred Warner, Jason Verrett, Jimmie Ward, and Arik Armstead leading what should be a talented mix. But there may be three more players ready to join that group this season, according to defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans.

Ryans was asked during a media session on Wednesday which players he feels are in a position to make a big leap once the season gets underway. The first player he singled out was defensive tackle Kevin Givens, who has shown some flashes in a reserve role since joining the 49ers as an undrafted rookie out of Penn State in 2019. Givens had 19 tackles and a sack in 13 games last season after playing in just one game as a rookie.

"I look at a young guy like Kevin Givens and the way he's been working," Ryans said. "It's been outstanding to see him work. He's getting better and better each day."

Givens was arrested in February on a charge of second-degree assault, but that charge was recently dropped.

Ryans also gave some extended praise to second-year defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw, which was discussed on 49ers Webzone earlier. Kinlaw had 15 tackles, 1.5 sacks, and one interception in 14 games (12 starts) last season after being selected by the 49ers in Round 1 of the 2020 NFL Draft but had some ups and downs after going through an offseason that was limited due to league restrictions surrounding COVID-19. But now that Kinlaw has a year under his belt, Ryans expects to see much more from the talented second-year lineman once the 2021 season gets underway.

"He's going to take a huge jump this year... He's been doing an awesome job," Ryans said. "I can already see how much better he's gotten in the couple weeks we've been together."

The third player Ryans mentioned was linebacker Dre Greenlaw. That's encouraging news, seeing as how Greenlaw has already made his presence felt over his first two NFL seasons with 178 tackles, ten tackles for loss, and one of the biggest plays in recent 49ers history.

"Just how he's developed and how he's gotten better throughout these OTAs, I'm fired up to see his growth this year," Ryans said.

But while Ryans feels those three players may be next in line for great things, he made it a point to say that players like Bosa, Verrett, and Armstead are still ahead of the pack. And it will be those players driving the bus on defense for the 49ers this season as they attempt to rebound from an injury-riddled 2020 campaign.

"Guys who have been here, leaders who will help guide this defense -- this defense is theirs, and I'm just here to help them go out to perform as good as they possibly can," Ryans said.

Related News







More San Francisco 49ers News



Jim Trotter breaks down why 49ers are high on DeMeco Ryans

By David Bonilla
Jul 20, 2021

The San Francisco 49ers promoted DeMeco Ryans to defensive coordinator after Robert Saleh left to become the head coach of the New York Jets. Ryans was asked in June what fans can expect to see from his defense this season. Was he planning to follow the same blueprint that Saleh laid out, or were some bigger changes on the horizon? "Our defense will be a fast, attacking, aggressive defense," Ryans responded. "I want guys to play fast. I want guys who are smart. I want guys who are going to play physical. That's one thing for me is just growing up, watching the 49ers play defense. The defense has always stood out here. This has been a defensive organization. They



Fred Warner: DeMeco Ryans to add 'his own touch' to the defense, 49ers are 'dialed in' and 'hungry'

By David Bonilla
Jul 23, 2021

Fred Warner has been paid, and the All-Pro linebacker is excited to get back to work. The San Francisco 49ers report to training camp next week and will hold their first practice on Wednesday, July 28. A historic number of injuries derailed the Niners' 2020 campaign, and the team finished with just six wins. In addition, the defense lost its coordinator, Robert Saleh, who left to become the head coach of the New York Jets. DeMeco Ryans, Warner's former position coach, replaces Saleh. While some wonder what this might mean in the immediate future for the defense's production, the star linebacker expects a smooth transition to Ryans. RELATED:



John Lynch reaches out to Richard Sherman and wife; 49ers ready to offer resources, support

By David Bonilla
Jul 15, 2021

Richard Sherman is going through a difficult situation right now. He was arrested on Wednesday morning after allegedly crashing his vehicle, then causing a disturbance at the residence of his in-laws, and eventually resisting law enforcement. Sherman was charged with "burglary domestic violence," with the "domestic violence" designation being assigned due to the cornerback being related to individuals inside the residence where the incident took place. While Sherman and officers suffered some minor injuries before the cornerback was apprehended, no one else was injured. More troubling was the



PFF on 49ers: 3 players to build around, power rankings, 2021 season odds

By David Bonilla
Jul 13, 2021

Pro Football Focus published several articles with some telling information on the analytics site's perception of the San Francisco 49ers in 2021. Let's quickly run through each of the topics. Three Players to Build Around Analyst Ben Linsey named three players to build around for each NFL team as it prepares for the 2021 season. They were tight end George Kittle, rookie quarterback Trey Lance, and third-year pass rusher Nick Bosa for the Niners. Omitted from the list is linebacker Fred Warner. Linsey admits that was a difficult choice. The decision came down to Bosa versus Warner, and the analyst couldn't ignore the


Featured

Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone