The 49ers are already losing defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans to the Texans, and these soon-to-be Niners free agents may soon follow.
It’s not uncommon for a first-time head coach to bring some players with him from his former program.
Case in point, former San Francisco 49ers offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel ultimately ended up with some previous Niners players, such as running back Raheem Mostert and wide receiver Trent Sherfield, when he took over the Miami Dolphins‘ head-coaching job in 2022.
Now, it’ll be soon-to-be former San Francisco defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans’ turn to do so.
Ryans is officially going to become the next head coach of the Houston Texans, as announced on Tuesday, which will mark the end of a highly successful two-year tenure as coordinator of one of the best defenses in the NFL.
Understandably, Ryans will probably want to bring over some 49ers players who are hitting NFL free agency this offseason, not unlike what McDaniel did.
If that’s the case, these five pending free agents could be on their way to Houston.
49ers DT Hassan Ridgeway might follow DeMeco Ryans to Texans
Before suffering what turned into a season-ending pectoral injury, veteran defensive tackle Hassan Ridgeway was quite the nice free-agent storyline for the Niners over the first half of 2022, filling a number of roles and helping make up for injury absences to fellow defensive tackles like Arik Armstead and Javon Kinlaw.
Ridgeway’s versatility might be something of use for a defensive line that surrendered a historically bad average of 170.2 rush yards per game.
With Ryans’ proven track record of having a great run-stuffing defense, someone like Ridgeway coming aboard and filling a flexible void as either a spot starter or high-quality reserve would be valuable.
Speaking of value, Ridgeway isn’t going to be expensive either, especially coming off an injury, which will allow Ryans and the Texans to splurge in NFL free agency elsewhere.