Chase Young

Young to see increased 49ers playoff role in Ferrell's absence

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SANTA CLARA — The 49ers will be without one of their unsung playmakers through at least the divisional playoff round, but defensive end Nick Bosa believes they have the necessary depth.

Defensive end Clelin Ferrell suffered a knee injury in the club’s Week 18 loss to the Los Angeles Rams and will be out for a few weeks, but has a chance to return if the 49ers can stay alive late into the playoffs. The Clemson product totaled 3.5 sacks and 28 tackles — 15 solo and six for a loss in his 17 games, but Bosa shared that there is more to his teammate than just stats.

“Clelin brought probably the best effort of anybody on the team,” Bosa told reporters this week. “I think that was one of the biggest things he brought. All the ends are going to have to step it up for Clelin whether he misses one game or whatever it is. We just have to hone in on the technique of things.”

Bosa’s former Ohio State teammate, Chase Young, is one of the players who will see more time on the field in Ferrell’s absence. While the former Washington Commanders first-round pick has undeniable talent, there is an acclimation period that has to take place when playing in a new system.

Defensive line coach Kris Kocurek and assistant Darryl Tapp have spent extra time with Young since the trade to ease the transition. Bosa understands that success with a new group won’t happen overnight for Young or fellow midseason acquisition Randy Gregory.

“Having a camp here and being in the scheme and just understanding the aiming points and all the stuff that Kris preaches,” Bosa explained. “It’s tough to come in and get it right right away. Randy and Chase are still learning. So they are going to have to learn quick on the run and be ready to fill those shoes.”

Fred Warner has liked what he has seen from Young since the pass rusher’s arrival in Week 8. The team captain has taken note of his effort and sees him as a perfect fit for the defense, especially at a point of need, heading into the postseason.

“He came in and was exactly the type of guy that we want in being a 49er,” Warner said. He bought right into what we were doing. He already had ingrained in him the little things like running to the football, playing with that violence like we ask our guys to do. On top of the talent and ability that he has, he’s continued to get better.” 

Along with Young and Gregory, rookie Robert Beal Jr. also will have a chance to contribute on the edge. Bosa maintains that the most important element to success in the postseason is refocusing on the details that can lead to game-changing plays.

“Sometimes towards the end of the year you lose it a little bit, but now there’s no excuse,” Bosa said. “You got to get fresh, and really play the scheme the way it’s supposed to be played and we are really focusing on that as a defensive line group and d-end group.”

As far as for his fellow Buckeye preparing for only his second post-season appearance, Bosa expects big things.

“He’s going to have to play more,” Bosa said of Young. “I’m excited for him to have this opportunity.” 

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