49ers film study: 2017 roster fits in Robert Saleh’s nickel defense
By Chris Wilson
San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh plans to switch the Niners to a new defensive system. Now that the 2017 NFL Draft is complete, how will the 49ers roster fit in their new nickel defense?
The San Francisco 49ers’ new defensive coordinator Robert Saleh plans to install a Pete Carroll-style defense similar to those played by Saleh’s previous teams, the Seattle Seahawks and Jacksonville Jaguars.
Saleh’s defense will likely be a 4-3 under/over hybrid on base downs, in front of a single-high secondary, playing a mix of Cover-3 Press and Cover-1. We recently discussed how the 49ers’ personnel will fit into their new 4-3 scheme.
Similar to the Seahawks and Jaguars, who play base defense at the highest rate in the league, the 49ers will likely be in base defense in many early down situations, even against three-wide receiver sets. Still, the NFL is a passing league, and sub packages will be an equally important part of the 49ers’ 2017 overall defense.
Let’s take a look at the 2016 Jaguars’ nickel defense — specifically coverages other than Cover-3 Press — and discuss how the 2017 49ers roster will fit into the defense scheme.