SF 49ers: 5 best players over the first half of the season

Fred Warner #54 of the SF 49ers (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
Fred Warner #54 of the SF 49ers (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /
6 of 6
Fred Warner, SF 49ers
Fred Warner, San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Kathryn Riley/Getty Images) /

No. 1: SF 49ers LB Fred Warner

The best player for the SF 49ers so far in 2020 is also one of the best players in the NFL: middle linebacker Fred Warner.

The former third-round draft pick out of BYU has slowly been climbing the ranks among the best linebackers in the league and is now, at least according to Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, the best in the NFL:


Warner already has 74 tackles on the season and so is on pace to set his career high by that metric and has a career-best two interceptions through nine games.

More from SF 49ers News

Yes, the loss of players like Nick Bosa, cornerback Richard Sherman, and former-Niner defensive tackle DeForest Buckner has forced Warner to step up his game and become the best player on the SF 49ers defense by a wide margin.

But Warner was well on his way to becoming a top player, even if the loss of key members of the defense has amplified the work that the linebacker is doing this season. But Niners fans know Warner has been the captain of the defense since his rookie season, even if the league hasn’t paid as much attention to him.

There’s a great deal of buzz about what Warner will look like once players like Bosa and his ilk are back and performing up to their expected levels, but the first step will be rewarding the linebacker for his continued improvement each and every season.

There’s no doubt Warner has been the best and most consistent player on SF 49ers so far this season, and for those who have been paying attention, his ascendence to that level comes as no surprise.

Next. 4 reasons why SF 49ers won’t move on from Jimmy Garoppolo. dark

But Warner having become potentially the best middle linebacker in the game might. And so far he’s living up to the billing.