Chase Young

Spears offers 49ers' Young advice after lack of effort goes viral

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Chase Young’s viral video of his effort – or lack thereof –  in the 49ers' 34-31 win over the Detroit Lions in the NFC Championship Game has been making the rounds, prompting a prominent former NFL defensive end and current national analyst to chime in. 

In an interview with NBC Sports Bay Area’s Laura Britt at Radio Row on Thursday in Las Vegas ahead of Super Bowl LVIII, former Dallas Cowboy and ESPN analyst Marcus Spears opened with some sound advice for Young when asked how the former No. 2 overall pick should look to bounce back.

“Go make plays,” Spears told Britt. “…Listen, we are the most fickle thing on Earth. If Chase Young goes and has 2.5 sacks and a caused fumble, we won’t ever show that play.

“…But within the house, within the organization, you can’t have [the ability to go missing during a play] because you’re supremely talented and these plays are so vitally important that determine winning or losing.]

With about five minutes left in the first half of the NFC title game, Lions running back Jahmyr Gibbs was pitched the ball by quarterback Jared Goff as he roamed left, opening a sizable gap on the right side of the field for Gibbs to exploit.

The Lions running back did exactly that, speeding and cutting out-of-position San Francisco defenders -- including Young, who appears lackadaisical in the footage -- and scoring a 15-yard touchdown.

Spears claims that getting exposed for a moment like that should cause a light-bulb moment for the 24-year-old.

“I think [for] Chase, that’s a grow-up moment,” Spears added. “That’s a maturity moment of saying, ‘Yo, bro, you’re not looked at as this guy from Ohio State anymore. You have to prove it all over again. We know you had a phenomenal rookie year, but there was a reason Washington was willing to trade you.’ 

“And I saluted the trade. I applauded it. I thought that San Francisco was getting a hell of a player, and I think they have a hell of a player. 

“But that’s a part of becoming [an] elite football player: is the effort and the energy. And when you’ve been blessed with athleticism and the talent that he has, those things will be highlighted when they show up on film.” 

Young recently took accountability for his lack of effort, but as Spears mentioned, he will need to perform – ideally in Super Bowl LVIII against the Kansas City Chiefs – to drop off the trending page.

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