Jags DE Josh Allen explains nuance behind what makes Nick Bosa great

It’s not hard to watch 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa and determine that he’s one of the best players at his position in the NFL. He has a high motor, spends a ton of time in the backfield, and disrupts offenses in both the pass and run games. Bosa was the first defensive end off the board in the 2019 draft when San Francisco selected him No. 2 overall. That pick initially had his fellow 2019 draftee, Jaguars DE Josh Allen and eventual No. 7 overall pick, feeling slighted. Now he understands why Bosa went ahead of him.

In a fascinating discussion with Arik Armstead on his show ‘Third and Long’ for Tidal League, Allen talked about the 49ers star DE and why Bosa is now one of his favorite DEs to watch.

“He was the first end taken and I told you how I felt,” Allen said. “I’m like, ‘dang. How’d he get picked before me?’ But then it’s like, once I started learning the game and I started to really watch tape is when I started to really understand and see the type of game Nick had.”

Allen was an outstanding prospect coming out of Kentucky, and from a pure physical tools standpoint might have been a more ideal prospect than Bosa. He was also extremely productive as an outside linebacker for the Wildcats where he had a more well-rounded game that saw him drop in coverage some instead of simply lining up and playing on the line of scrimmage.

There’s more nuance to rushing the passer in the NFL though, and that’s something Allen quickly learned when watching Bosa more closely.

“Bro, Nick is an unbelievable player,” Allen said. “He does a lot of things really good, really clean, and he’s very consistent. Very consistent. One thing Nick does that I try to incorporate in my game is the angles. It’s the steps. It’s the why he’s doing the steps. Not really the move, but just the setup … He does a lot of things well and is very consistent. So that’s one thing that I like to watch Nick about.”

While Bosa had a ton of success during his first five seasons with the 49ers, Allen has been an excellent player in his own right. He started his career with 10.5 sacks, finishing fourth in the Defensive Rookie of the Year voting. Bosa finished first. Allen’s sack totals dipped to 2.5 because he played in only eight games. Then he posted 7.5 in each of the next two years. Last year he broke out with 17.5 sacks to earn his second Pro Bowl trip.

Perhaps watching Bosa and incorporating some of those more nuanced pass rushing elements into his game has helped catalyze Allen’s growth. The numbers would certainly say so.

Story originally appeared on Niners Wire