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reached 10,000 career yards rec
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elaine95 Offline
Restrainer of Glory

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reached 10,000 career yards rec

SANTA CLARA Trace McSorley Jersey , Calif. (AP) — The most glaring need for the San Francisco 49ers this offseason was clear after the defense set records for futility with just seven takeaways and two interceptions last season.The team’s first two big moves of the new league year were made to address that deficiency with the additions of an edge rusher in Dee Ford, who has a propensity for strip sacks, and a speedy linebacker in Kwon Alexander, who has a knack for finding the ball.“That wasn’t fun to watch,” general manager John Lynch said Thursday. “It is something we have to live with. It’s a reality, and we needed to change that. These are the type of players that we believe can reverse that trend. Starting with Kwon. He’s always around the ball. There’s so many things to like, but that is definitely something that jumps. And then Dee, he has a knack for getting the ball out. Eight forced fumbles last year, and that first step is lethal. We think that can help our entire team get that virus going, where we’re taking away the ball on a regular basis.”The 49ers paid a big price for these additions, trading a 2020 second-round pick to Kansas City to acquire Ford and then giving him a five-year, $87.5 million contract, and signing Alexander to a four-year deal worth $54 million.Ford had a career-high 13 sacks last season and led the NFL with seven forced fumbles. He also led all edge rushers with 84 total quarterback pressures, according to Pro Football Focus, making him exactly the kind of playmaker the 49ers lacked on defense this past season.“It’s really a mindset and muscle memory,” Ford said of forcing turnovers. “It’s not really an intricate skill to have. It’s just a mindset. Most guys get to the quarterback and just want to take him down. Just switch the mentality and knock the ball out. You have to work it. Everything happens so fast so it needs to be muscle memory to go for the ball.”The 49ers haven’t had an edge rusher reach double digits in sacks since Aldon Smith had 19 1/2 in 2012 and have the fifth-fewest overall sacks in the NFL the past six seasons. DeForest Buckner led the team with 12 sacks this past season, mostly from an interior spot.Alexander, coming off a torn ACL, has six career interceptions, six forced fumbles Kyler Murray Jersey , two fumble recoveries and seven sacks in 46 games.“Speed and violence affect the quarterback and make people do stupid things before they want to,” coach Kyle Shanahan said. “Both of these guys have a lot of speed, and they both play very violent.”With Ford slated to start at defensive end in the Leo position on San Francisco’s defense, the strategy in the draft could be altered. The Niners have the second overall pick and could be in position to take Ohio State’s Nick Bosa, who is projected to play the same role.Now they could be in position to move down in the draft or look at a rush linebacker like Josh Allen.“We’re evaluating everyone,” Lynch said. “Having Dee just makes us a better football team, and the draft’s something separate. Yes, those two do interact at some point, but we’ll see. We’re going to go out there and look. At No. 2, you want to have a great football player. That’s what we’re looking for and we’ll see where it ends up.”The 49ers also signed cornerback Jason Verrett to a one-year deal, receiver Jordan Matthews to a one-year contract, linebacker David Mayo to a two-year contract, and agreed on a one-year deal to bring back safety Antone Exum. San Francisco also released linebacker Brock Coyle, who announced he will retire after suffering a back injury last season.Verrett is a 2014 first-round pick by the Chargers and made the Pro Bowl in 2015. But he has played only five games the past three seasons after suffering knee injuries in 2016 and ’17 and then tearing his Achilles tendon during a conditioning test on the first day of training camp last year.Verrett will compete with 2017 third-round pick Ahkello Witherspoon and 2018 third-rounder Tarvarius Moore for the starting spot across from Richard Sherman.“It’s a smile now, cry later type of thing for me,” Verrett said of his run of injuries. “It was a lot of dark moments dealing with the injuries, but I came out of the tunnel and I’m ready to get things rolling.”Matthews is a cousin of former 49ers great Jerry Rice and has always wanted to play for the team. He was a second-round pick by Philadelphia in 2014 and has 270 catches for 3,255 yards and 22 TDs in five seasons with the Eagles and Buffalo.Matthews averaged 75 catches a year his first three seasons before being slowed by injuries in 2017 with the Bills and a lack of opportunities last season with the Eagles after returning to Philadelphia.Mayo was a special teams standout for Carolina who offers depth at inside linebacker for San Francisco.Exum spent the past two seasons with the 49ers and started seven games at safety in 2018. CLEVELAND (AP) — Quarterback Matt Ryan packed his belongings, left Atlanta’s subdued locker room and slowly walked down the corridor toward the team bus, pulling his wheeled luggage.He and the Falcons may have left their playoff hopes behind.Their three-game winning streak came to a screeching halt Sunday with a 28-16 loss to the Cleveland Browns , who put together one of their best all-around games in years against an Atlanta team that had seemingly turned its season around following a 1-4 start.But the Falcons (4-5) committed a costly turnover in the second half, gave up a Cleveland-record-breaking 92-yard touchdown run to Georgia native Nick Chubb, and failed to execute on a critical trip to the red zone when the game was still winnable.Afterward, Atlanta coach Dan Quinn was at a loss to explain his team’s puzzling performance.“I thought we had made some improvement and some progress, so it’s a setback,” Quinn said. “I like the fight of our guys. I know we’ll come back to fight. When you miss an opportunity, whether it’s a team that people on the outside say you should win or one people think the other way, I go into it and think you can get them all. When you don’t get that done, for sure it stinks.”It was shocking considering the Falcons were coming off a well-balanced win over Washington last week and had fought their way back into contention in the NFC South.“It was disappointing,” said Ryan, whose solid stats (38 of 52 for 330 yards and two touchdowns) obscured other offensive issues. “Obviously, you have to give credit to Cleveland. I thought they played really well and made a lot of good plays. We fell short and did not make enough plays when we needed to. We didn’t play up to the standard that we are capable to playing.“We need to do that as we move forward and get ready for next week. We have got to play better.”Despite their problems, the Falcons were only down 14-10 at halftime, and with their high-powered offense, a comeback seemed inevitable against the Browns (3-6-1), who had dropped four in a row.Atlanta got the ball to start the third quarter and got a 23-yard completion from Ryan to Julio Jones on the first play. After an 8-yard loss, Ryan connected on a 4-yard pass to wide receiver Mohamed Sanu, who fumbled after a hit by Browns cornerback T.J. Carrie.Cleveland recovered at Atlanta’s 41 and quickly drove for a touchdown as rookie QB Baker Mayfield hit Duke Johnson for an 11-yard score to give the Browns a 21-10 lead.Sanu’s fumble had given the momentum right back to the Browns, but while they were shaky, the Falcons still seemed OK when they pinned Cleveland at its 8 after a punt.The worst was yet to come.On second down Andy Isabella Jersey , Chubb found a crease on Atlanta’s right side, cut toward the sideline and outran several Falcons to the end zone on the longest rushing play in Cleveland history — and the longest by any rookie since 1949.As Chubb raced by, Quinn, Ryan and everyone else dressed in black and red on the Atlanta sideline could only watch helplessly as any thoughts of a comeback completely vanished.Quinn didn’t want to speculate on what went wrong on the play. Suffice to say, little went right.Still, the Falcons were hanging around in the fourth quarter when a series of head-scratching plays perhaps best sized up their day.Atlanta drove to Cleveland’s 6 before a short pass was followed by two runs up the middle that were stopped by the Browns short of the end zone. Then, on fourth down and inches from a TD, Ryan was inexplicably in the shotgun before he threw a pass toward third-string tight end Eric Saubert, who had no chance of making a catch.Ryan’s choice of targets was peculiar given his other options: Jones, Sanu and tight end Alex Hooper, who caught 10 passes. Even a running play made more sense.The hard-to-understand performance and loss overshadowed a personal milestone for Jones, who reached 10,000 career yards receiving faster than any player in NFL history.“It’s always tough when you lose,” said Jones, who had seven catches for 107 yards and one TD. “We can make up stuff here and there, but at the end of the day it’s on us. I’m going to keep saying that we can play better and we can do better, but with opportunities and things like that, we have to do better. That’s it. That’s the bottom line.We just have to get back to work.”
08-14-2019 08:13 AM
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