Why Sherman believes 49ers are top NFC team after blowout win vs. Jags originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area
On Monday's episode of FS1's "Undisputed," former All-Pro defensive back Richard Sherman made his case for why the 49ers once again are the team to beat in the NFC after their dominating performance in Jacksonville.
"They cured the things that were ailing them for the last three weeks," Sherman said. "They're playing better defensively. They're getting pressure on the quarterback. They're getting back to basics, Fred Warner with the interception, Talanoa Hufanga with the interception. The D-line is getting pressure, [and] Chase Young comes in and adds a whole other element. Someone other than Nicholas John Bosa is getting chipped. Javon Hargrave and Arik Armstead get to go and do their work. Randy Gregory got some pressure on the quarterback.
"It's really fun to see Charvarius Ward got some [pass breakups]; looked really good. When there is pressure on the quarterback, everything looks different. Everything looks better. They held a team that was on a five-game winning streak to three points at home. It's an East Coast time zone trip, which West Coast teams always struggle with. It's a 10 a.m. start, which West Coast teams always struggle with."
The 49ers' defensive front wreaked havoc on Jaguars quarterback Trevor Lawrence, recording five sacks, while seven different players recorded at least one pressure in Sunday's win.
San Francisco's relentless defensive pressure forced the Jaguars' offense to commit four turnovers, which tied a season-high in takeaways for the 49ers' defense.
Sherman also highlighted that the 49ers' offense was equally impressive, eclipsing 30 points for the first time since Week 5 after a string of paltry scoring outputs during San Francisco's three-game losing streak.
"Coming off a bye, to score 34 points offensively," Sherman explained. "Brock Purdy, three touchdowns [and] 296 yards. Skip, I don't even have to look at the notes. I know what it looks like when the San Francisco 49ers are on. Sixteen rushes for Christian McCaffrey for 95 yards, also had a couple grabs for about 47 yards. They were doing their best to try and get him in the end zone at the end of the game. Could have been 41 points if they just would have tried to score instead of trying to get Christian to score, but he deserved that chance, and Kyle tried to get it for him."
Sherman also noted defensive coordinator Steve Wilks' decision to move from the booth to the field during games, stating that the change likely will be permanent after the exceptional showing from his unit on Sunday.
"I think they're going to lock the booth up and not let [Steve] Wilks back in that booth for the rest of the year," Sherman quipped. "I think they're going to lock the door and hide the key."
After navigating a rough patch, the 49ers are back where they expected to be among the league's elite teams. San Francisco will look to build on this impressive win when they face the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday at Levi's Stadium.