NEWS UPDATE: HOW The 49ers’ defense got back on track under Steve Wilks.

Steve Wilks, the defensive coordinator for the 49ers, moved from the coaches box to the sideline, but that didn’t contribute much to his team’s performance.

It wasn’t just that Steve Wilks preferred the heat and energy of the sideline over the solitary think-tank of the coaches’ box that caused it to happen.

However, after consulting with coach Kyle Shanahan, the 49ers defensive coordinator was demoted, and things have been going better ever since.

With an NFL-low 15.8 points allowed per game and a strong defensive record following a three-game losing streak that led to Wilks being moved from the box to the sideline, the 49ers are dominating the field once more. The alteration, which Shanahan claimed was slight, was merely the catalyst for further developments.

When Wilks agreed to take over for DeMeco Ryans, who, like Robert Saleh before him, turned his success managing the 49ers’ defense into a head coaching position, he knew what was in store.

In the public’s perspective, taking over a defense as good as the 49ers had no choice but to go down, much like the shift from the eighth floor to the ground level at Levi’s Stadium.

Wilks stated on Thursday, “Like I told you guys before, I’m a very small piece of this puzzle.” “I was aware gWoing into this that if we performed poorly, I would be held accountable, and if we performed well, we should have.”

Wilks, 54, is right about how he would be judged, yet by downplaying his importance, he is acting like a good soldier. Comparing the 49ers defense from the five-game winning run in Weeks 10 through 14 to the crash-and-burn in Weeks 6 through 8 is akin to comparing two distinct units.

In the three losses, the 49ers allowed 24.0 points per game, 395.3 yards, 6.2 yards per play, 122.1 yards running, and an average of 4.7 yards per rush, with five sacks and four takeaways. The 49ers are allowing 13.0 points per game, 277.0 yards, 4.6 yards per play, and 65.8 yards per game rushing with a 3.5 per-rush average with 22 sacks and 10 takeaways during the current five-game winning run.

Rather than applying pressure, Nick Bosa started to stack sacks. Ji’Ayir Brown, a youngster, replaced injured All-Pro strong safety Talanoa Hufanga with ease. At linebacker, Fred Warner and Dre Greenlaw are performing on par with Patrick Willis and Navarro Bowman.

Wilks, who specializes in the secondary, has created plans in which Charvarius Ward follows the leading receiver of the opposition.

It feels like a long time ago when you were sliced and diced by Kirk Cousins and Joe Burrow, then beaten by Cleveland and practice squad promotion P.J. Walker.

After 28 games as a head coach (3-13 with Arizona in 2018; 6-6 as interim head coach with Carolina), Wilks has had enough experience with the press to become an expert at sidestepping inquiries about himself.

Give credit where credit is due: during his time with the 49ers, Wilks has made his own adjustments while adjusting to an established system, so it seems sense that things took some time to get going.

Before halftime, there was the much-discussed zero blitz call against Minnesota, which set up a 60-yard touchdown pass from Kirk Cousins to Jordan Addison. Shanahan publicly shamed him for it, and rumors circulated that the coordinator’s move to the sidelines was a panicked decision. After defeating Jacksonville 34-3, the 49ers haven’t

The anti-Wilks noise meter going into the Arizona game on Sunday?


Free safety Tashaun Gipson stated, “I don’t think his confidence or anything with him has wavered.” “He didn’t break a sweat during the three-game losing run. He addressed us like men and stood before us like a man would. His enthusiasm has inspired us to play football in a unique way. He continues to keep the primary focus intact. He is aware of the main objective, which is to defeat everyone if we carry out our plan and the offense executes its plan. defensive end Wilks’ manner, according to Clelin Ferrell, has been constant.

Ferrell stated, “He shows up to work every day and is the same guy, win or lose.” That, I believe, is what we admire in him. He will only become irrational when it comes to how we operate. It matters not only if we prevailed but also how. We can support this level because many of the guys in our group have big aspirations. We find it easy because of the kind of man he is.

Even while Wilks’ presence on the sidelines isn’t the only factor contributing to the team’s progress, Shanahan believes the defense is better now than it was during the season’s first five wins, let alone the three losses.

Shanahan stated on Friday, “I think we’ve been playing better as a group on all three levels.” “I believe that even with our five straight victories, we were a touch inconsistent with our three losses. There were instances when the D-line, linebackers, and secondary were effective. Those three units have all been better matched with one another. Increased sacks, turnovers, and pass breakups have all resulted from it.

SportsRadar reports that although Wilks wasn’t a particularly aggressive blitzer in his prior stops, the 49ers were using extra rushers at a rate of 20.5 percent during the losing run, which has since decreased to 14.6 percent in the last five games. That’s mostly because he relies on his defensive line to apply pressure.

Along with helping to create the “mush-rush” strategy, which kept Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts in the pocket during a 42-19 victory over Philadelphia, he is currently dealing with Arizona’s Kyler Murray, another dangerous running back.

This week, the 49ers will be missing Arik Armstead and Javon Hargrave, but Bosa is pleased with how the new rushers have fit in with Wilks in charge of defense and Kris Kocurek in charge of the defensive line, which included rookies Ferrell, Randy Gregory, and Chase Young.



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