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Linebackers Show No Weaknesses

Posted by Scott Kegley on May 2, 2012 – 5:12 PM

If it wasn’t for the color of jerseys they wear, you might not be able to distinguish the 49ers linebackers from some of the 49ers pass catchers.

At least that’s Patrick Willis’ opinion.

Willis, along with NaVorro Bowman and Ahmad Brooks competed with wide receivers and defensive backs in the gauntlet drills at Wednesday’s Football School session. Similar to what receivers are asked to do at the NFL Combine, the players catch a total of seven passes from alternating sides while sprinting from one sideline to the other.

“It was a lot of fun,” Willis said as his eyes got bigger. “Not being on special teams, we found something else to participate in and that’s doing the gauntlet drill. I have to say we’re pretty good at it.”

Extremely athletic in their own rights, Willis and Bowman take just as much pride in defending the pass as they do blitzing and stopping the run. While the players certainly enjoy the uniqueness of the drill, they are also quite competitive when it comes to sharpening their skills.

“It pays off because we have to cover some good tight ends and running backs,” Willis said. “I was messing with Delanie (Walker) and Vernon (Davis) today, telling them I think Bowman and I can go in and play tight end. I told him I know we’re faster and we’re more athletic. Delanie, he begs to differ.”

Willis says that versatility is essential when playing in defensive coordinator Vic Fangio’s system.

“In our defense, we don’t want to have any weaknesses,” Willis said. “I’m not saying we’re a perfect defense, because we’re not. There are a lot of things we have to continue to work on and get better at. When you’re able to have linebackers that can get out in the slot and have to drop into coverage and have to cover man-to-man, be able to move and do what DBs do, it pays off. Those are some of the things we’re working on and trying to polish up and get better at during this time.”

Posted in Uncategorized | 21 Comments »

21 Responses to “Linebackers Show No Weaknesses”

  1. By Micah on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    Our Defense is not perfect……But dang close!!!! Best in the league and with all 11 returning with a year under their belts wow they will be even better this year. Lets see if we can go the entire year without allowing a rushing touchdown came dang close last season. Lets go Niners!!!!

  2. By 40niner808 on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    We are about to witness one of the best defensive performances in NFL history. Second year in the scheme PLUS a full offseason AND returning all 11 starters. We would have been the best defense last year but steelers nipped us at the end because of the rams and cardinals games.

  3. By the fanster on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    if you combine our starters and their respective back-ups,we have,by far, THE BEST LB CORE IN THE LEAGUE

  4. By Coach Ray on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    Im a local HS football coach and reading that a professional who is one of the best at the highest level speak about wanting to get better is great. We tell our boys that its ok to “Be Happy, Just Never Satisfied”.

  5. By peldensr on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    no aldon smith competing. damn!!!!

  6. By peldensr on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    aldon smith wasn’t there? would have been great if he participated in those drills

  7. By Ty Gillard on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    I dont think we will win more then 10 games this year, i think we benfitted from an easy schedule and were o ly beating people by a few points by season end.

  8. By FanFromTonga on May 2, 2012 | Reply

    Go NIners……..Go Defense…..Go Offense!!!!!

  9. By Vortex on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    Somebody tell the guys at Madden that Willis and Bowman’s Speed and Man-coverage need to be higher!

  10. By tyc033 on May 3, 2012 | Reply


  11. By EG49er4Life on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    Lets get this started, lets go and shine like the golden shield D, defending our enzone from the intruders that wish to try and enter…Lets get’em D we are the best, the beast, the GOLDEN SHIELD D nothing can penitrate and our SHIELD wont break…Lets gettem niners!!! Wow, I am so exited about this year, I think this is the year that will start our next Dynasty..Believe That!!!!!!!!! Ride and DIE RED and GOLD!!!!

  12. By J on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    2nd Year with all 11 players back! AWESOME! I wish the season started Sunday! So excited, its been a long time! WHO’S GOT IT BETTER THAN US?! NOBODY!!!!

  13. By 49fsince67 on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    p/u a couple of nice young LB’s bottom have of draft for depth untill they become next

  14. By Niner from the cradle 2 the grave on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    Our defense only needs 1 thing to be perfect……a RING!!!! In Harbaalke we trust!!!

  15. By Brooksie on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    Is this going to be a new trend? LB’s and the secondary participating in WR gauntlets? Good skills and training for already a tough defense. Looking forward to seeing the DL’s do the RB gauntlets! Love the work ethic… Again, “Who’s got it better than us?”…. NOBODY!

  16. By Ojay on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    Yes, I’m very excited about next year also. Our defense will be thougher than last years, but I want to see what our offense is going to look like with all the weapons that we have now. Nobody got it better than us.

  17. By alex_fn_smith on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    god i love this team

  18. By Highflight49ers on May 3, 2012 | Reply

    “Harbough’s 49ers Battalion”

    49ers Special Team
    “Seely’s Strike Force”
    Kick Off Team
    Capt. D. R. Akers

    Punt Team
    Capt. A. P. Lee

    49ers Defense
    “Fangio’s Marauders”
    Capt. P. L. Willis

    49ers Offence
    “Roman’s Commandos”
    Capt. A. D. Smith
    OORAH GO NINERS!!!!!!!

  19. By Niner from the cradle 2 the grave on May 4, 2012 | Reply

    We are only scratching the surface!!!!… #Niner 4 Lyfe!!!!

  20. By Niner from the cradle 2 the grave on May 4, 2012 | Reply

  21. By Niner from the cradle 2 the grave on May 4, 2012 | Reply

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