Bosa describes mindset entering third postseason in four years

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SANTA CLARA — The 49ers must beat the Seattle Seahawks for a third time this season in order to advance past the first round of the NFC playoffs.

For those who believe that is a difficult feat to accomplish, 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa has an answer.

“I’d say it is true, because every team is really good, and there’s always a chance they can beat you,” Bosa said. “So the more times you play them, the more chance they have to beat you.

“We’ve put on some pretty good performances against them, so we have a good idea of how to beat them.”

The 49ers swept the NFC West for only the fifth time in franchise history. Their 6-0 record within the division included 27-7 and 21-13 victories over the Seahawks.

The 49ers (13-4) are on a 10-game win streak — the longest regular-season-concluding streak in franchise history.

Seattle made the playoffs with a 9-8 record after losing five of their final eight games of the season.

This is Bosa’s fourth season in the NFL and his third trip to the postseason, and those experiences have given him some valuable perspective.

The 49ers made it all the way to the Super Bowl in his rookie season. In 2020, Bosa’s season ended in Week 3 with a knee injury. Last year, the 49ers lost to the eventual Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams in the NFC Championship Game.

“Each year is different,” said Bosa, a leading candidate for NFL Defensive Player of the Year after leading the NFL with 18.5 sacks. “This kind of feels more like ’19 than last year. We were on a roll going in. We’re on even more of a roll this year.

“Confidence-wise, we go into every game with the players on this team knowing that we have what it takes. If we don’t do it, it’s on us.”

Bosa described the playoff experience he gained as “huge,” as the 49ers roll into the postseason as the No. 2 seed in the NFC.

“I’ve learned a ton from four years in this league and the intensity you have to bring, too,” he said. “Whenever you have good leaders on your team, they bring you along. I had that in ’19, and I’m hoping to do that for some guys this year.”

Bosa said he and Pro Bowl linebacker Fred Warner have spoken about how much to emphasize the importance of this single-elimination phase of the season.

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But he also realizes there is not too much to be said, either. The urgency of the situation can be better left unsaid.

“When you get on that field and Levi’s is packed, there’s just a different feel to playoff football and it brings it out of you,” Bosa said.

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