Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports


49ers defense on pace to be worse than last season

Oct 4, 2016 at 11:23 AM--


Many questioned the hiring of Jim O'Neil as the San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator early during the offseason. However, an impressive Week 1 performance against the Los Angeles Rams put fans' minds at ease – for a week.

Since giving up just 185 total yards to the Rams, the 49ers defense has given up an average of 458.3 yards per game over the past three weeks – all of which resulted in losses. The defensive performances over the past three games have put the O'Neil hiring back under scrutiny. Of course, it does not help that the 49ers offense has averaged just 292.8 total yards on offense (30th in the NFL) and just 70 total first downs through four games (27th in the NFL). The passing game ranks last in the league, so the 49ers offense is not doing the 49ers defense any favors.

Although, O'Neil's track record has not been the best. His defenses with the Cleveland Browns ranked 27th in 2015 and 23rd in 2014. They dropped from 8th to 22nd against the pass from 2014 to 2015. Against the run, they were 30th in 2015 and last in 2014. So, his resume was questionable at best.


Still, O'Neil's 2015 defense ranked better than the 49ers' Eric Mangini led defense that same year. His defense even beat the 49ers during the 2015 season. This season, O'Neil's 49ers defense ranks 26th overall, 23rd in points allowed, and last against the run.

What is really disturbing is the pace that the 49ers defense is on this season. It's about the same pace as last season's poor 49ers defense – worse in some areas. And now the 49ers defense will have to move forward without the best player and emotional leader, ILB NaVorro Bowman, who was lost for the season to a torn Achilles.

RELATED 49ers' NaVorro Bowman out for season with torn Achilles

Last season, the 49ers defense allowed 6,199 total yards to opposing offenses. This season, they are on pace to allow 6,240. Last season, they allowed 2,020 rushing yards to opponents. This season, they are on pace to allow 2,248.


"I think it starts first with tackling," O'Neil said today when asked about how he plans to improve the team's run defense. "You know, we've got to do a better job and it's something that we did a great job of all through preseason and then the first game of the year. And then the last two games, we've missed more tackles which has been uncharacteristic of our defense. So we've got to emphasize the heck out of that in practice. Just how you finish every play. You gotta bend at the end. You gotta press at the hip. All the coaching points that we constantly give the guys. We've got to emphasize it even though we're not hitting in practice, you've got to finish every play that way.

"We did some things the past couple of weeks that were uncharacteristic of us technique-wise, especially up front where they were able to cut our defense in half. So we've got to make some improvements there. And then I can help the guys play calling-wise – when we've getting those fast zones – helping the guys get going in a certain area so we're not as vulnerable to getting cut backside and some other things.

"So, it's something that we're spending time on. We did a lot of good things, but we're still letting – you know, those two or three big plays – they're getting out of us and that's what we got to take out of our game."





More San Francisco 49ers News



49ers-Packers: Elijah Mitchell's injury 'a little worse' than thought but he could play Sunday, says Kyle Shanahan

By David Bonilla
Sep 22

Before today's practice, San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan spoke with reporters and shared several injury updates. First, he confirmed that defensive lineman Kevin Givens (ankle) and running back JaMycal Hasty (ankle), who the coach previously said would be out "a while," will both head to injured reserve. Running back Elijah Mitchell was also injured during the team's Week 2 win over the Philadelphia Eagles. Shanahan initially hoped his shoulder injury was just a stinger but told reporters today that it was a bit worse without revealing the specifics of the injury. "Elijah Mitchell has a shoulder, will not practice," Shanahan said. "... A little worse than a stinger, so that's why he can't go today. He's got a chance at Sunday." Defensive



49ers' Deebo Samuel on bout with Eagles: 'We're just trying to feed off last week's win'

By Adithya Peruvemba
Sep 18

San Fransisco 49ers third-year wideout Deebo Samuel broke out onto the scene once again during Week 1 against the Detroit Lions last Sunday. The wide receiver put up impressive numbers with 9 catches and a touchdown for a total of 189 yards, the second-highest receiving total by any Niners player on opening week. This comes as a relief to San Fransisco as Samuel once again looked like the promising player he previously showed flashes of whenever he was healthy. In his rookie season, back in 2019, Deebo was touted as one of the best receivers out of the draft right next to A.J. Brown, DK Metcalf, and Terry McLaurin as the blossoming rookie put up 802 yards on 57 catches. However, the very next season, 2020, the injury bug that hit the rest of the Niners roster affected Deebo



The lesson George Kittle, 49ers learned from closer-than-it-should-have-been win vs. Lions

By Rohan Chakravarthi
Sep 13

The 49ers won in a thrilling, yet somewhat alarming way Sunday, as they went to Detroit to face the Lions and wound up victorious with a 41-33 final score. During the first quarter and a half of the game, the Lions kept it fairly close, losing only 14-10, but the 49ers pulled away in the second and third quarters, leading 38-10 at one point. In fact, with just under six minutes remaining, the 49ers led by 24 points, but a collapse, influenced by multiple defensive injuries, gave the Lions a chance to tie the game, as they reached the SF 24 yard line down just eight points, but failed to score. After the game, George Kittle shared the lesson that he and the team learned from this surprisingly close win, speaking to the level of talent in the



'Things are slowing down for me': Jimmy Garoppolo more comfortable than ever with 49ers offense

By David Bonilla
Sep 13

There were two narratives presented to San Francisco 49ers fans this offseason. The first was by the team itself. Even though it was drafting a quarterback of the future in Trey Lance, Jimmy Garoppolo remained very much in the plans for 2021. The other narrative was that the 49ers sought to trade Garoppolo but couldn't find a deal that fits. The team didn't care which narrative you believed. It was just moving forward with its plan. The 49ers, after all, have become incredibly proficient at blocking the outside noise, even as the coach, general manager, and player after player are repeatedly asked about the quarterback situation. Garoppolo might tell you it's an "it-is-what-it-is kind of thing," as he often does. And he'd be correct. He refused to


Featured

Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone