Nick Bosa was a dominant rookie in 2019 when his ability to besiege opposing quarterbacks helped the San Francisco 49ers reach the Super Bowl.
Bad news for the rest of the NFL: Bosa feels he’s playing a lot better this season, one season after knee reconstruction surgery, and the stats back that up.
After posting his third multi-sack game last week at Jacksonville, Bosa has a career-high 10, surpassing his nine in 2019, when he won the Defensive Rookie of the Year title.
“I think I have improved a lot,” said Bosa. “I think I’m starting to figure out how to really get sacks, raise the numbers. In my rookie season I was just there, pushing, trying to win on every play, and it worked out well. But now I’m really figuring out how the leaders in catches do it. They come out with a plan and they know when the opportunities are going to come and they are ready when it happens ”.
Bosa is among those leaders again, ranking fifth in the NFL in sacks (10), first in takedowns for loss of yards (15) and tied for third in punches to the opposing quarterback (22). He is one tackle for loss of yards and three hits to the quarterback from matching his impressive total in his first year in the league.
Bosa’s comeback season comes after he tore the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his knee in week 2 of last season, a very sensitive loss for the San Francisco defense.
The Niners (5-5) already have 23 sacks in 10 games this season, up from 30 in all of last season.
“Bosa is a special player and he’s just as valuable this season as he was in his rookie year,” said head coach Kyle Shanahan. “He was the difference for us in 2019 and we missed him so much last season. You can see why again this year. I think he’s improving every week and he’s playing at his best right now. “
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Bosa resumes rookie level and leads 49ers defense