San Francisco 49ers Defense Aims To Create Confusion

Posted: May 26 2015, 12:47am CDT | by , in News | Latest Sports News


San Francisco 49ers Defense Aims to Create Confusion
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  • Antoine Bethea says new 49ers defensive coordinator Eric Mangini's defense aims to create confusion in the upcoming 2015 NFL season.

San Francisco 49ers free safety Antoine Bethea told CSN Bay Area on May 25 new defensive coordinator Eric Mangini's defense aims to create confusion in the upcoming 2015 NFL season.

Opponents, beware. The San Francisco 49ers' defense will confuse you more than ever in 2015. 

This was what 49ers free safety Antoine Bethea told CSN Bay Area's Matt Maiocco on May 24:

"All D-coordinators have their style. Coach Mangini, his thing is we're going to cause confusion. The opposing offense isn't going to know what we're going to be able to do each down. It could be bringing the pressure. 

"It could be dropping eight into coverage. But it's just keeping the offense on their heels. However you want to look at it, I think it's going to be a good deal for our defense.

"Everybody has to know what everybody else is doing. It could be different people doing different jobs. It could be a linebacker dropping inside and the next play we can switch that."

Maiocco says Mangini will have several new faces at his disposal in his first year calling the shots for the San Francisco defense. The only defensive starters who are still on the San Francisco roster are linebackers Aldon Smith, NaVorro Bowman and Ahmad Brooks. 

Because of the new additions, Maiocco argues they can also be confused in Mangini's 3-4 scheme. However, Bethea told CSN Bay Area OTAs can help prevent that:

"That's what OTAs are for -- getting in the playbook and getting out there in front of the offense and doing different things and getting in the repetition and studying. And once the season comes, the coaches can fill it out, 'OK, we do this well; we don't do this as well.'"

New 49ers head coach Jim Tomsula commended Mangini, who was promoted from his tight ends coach position in January, this early, per Maiocco:

"Eric's doing a wonderful job in this part of it and (with) the things we're doing out on the field and the defense that we're learning. But now you also talk about Jason Tarver and you talk about Tim Lewis and (49ers linebackers coach) Clancy (Pendergast).

"You get all those guys together in there and some of it, we're trying (to figure out) who exactly are we, you know what I mean? And looking at some different things in coverage and looking at some different patterns and stuff like that.

"That'll all settle down once we're in, and again, it's not like that's something new. You've seen that here. You've seen that everywhere you go. OTAs, you put things in, you've got that time to put things in and kind of see what guys do better, so there's a lot of that going on. But all those guys, that entire coaching staff, is really some good stuff."

According to Joe Fann of the 49ers' official website, the team is now tasked to look for someone who will replace five-time Pro Bowl defensive lineman Justin Smith, who retired on May 18.   

Smith's 43.5 sacks and 10 forced fumbles during his seven-year career with the 49ers presents a huge void, per Fann. 

Nonetheless, 49ers defensive linemen such as Glenn Dorsey, Tank Carradine, Quinton Dial, Darnell Dockett, Tony Jerod-Eddie, Mike Purcell and Ian Williams are all up to the task, per the team's official website. 

Tomsula placed his confidence in this group, per Fann:

"Everybody in there is cross-trained. Dorsey has started at nose. Williams has started at nose. Dial started a game at nose. Michael Purcell has started a game at nose. Tony Jerod-Eddie has started a game at nose. They're all cross-trained so they can play them all. It creates the depth at that position. 

"Glen did a great job at the nose position, but Glen is part of the D-line group. We kind of stay away from telling guys, You're the nose.' All of those guys can move around and play that spot."

Mangini replaces Vic Fangio, now the Chicago Bears' defensive coordinator. Under Fangio's lead, the 49ers defense ranked fourth, third, fifth and fifth in fewest yards allowed during his four-year stint alongside former 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh, per CSN Bay Area.

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The Author

Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.




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