NFC Notes: 49ers, Rams, Seahawks


49ers DC Demeco Ryans praised the play of DL Arik Armstead, who has largely held his own following the departure of fellow Oregon alum DT DeForest Buckner in a trade to the Colts.

“I think our run defense improved drastically because of the unselfish play by Arik Armstead,” Ryans said, via David Lombardi of The Athletic. “I think people forget we lost our starter in (Javon) Kinlaw early in the year, and we were trying to figure that out inside. When you want to play good run defense, you have to have two really good interior defensive linemen. And Arik unselfishly moving inside helped, and D.J. Jones has been outstanding all year.”

  • 49ers HC Kyle Shanahan on the team defending QB Jimmy Garoppolo: “Shows what they think of him and shows our guys on social media. Glad they’re sticking up for him. What they say is the truth. He’s done an unbelievable job and doesn’t get him enough credit.” (Cam Inman)
  • An executive tells Jason Cole that Garoppolo should be able to secure over $30 million per year if he becomes a free agent: “It’s just supply and demand. There are too many teams who need a guy who can make them competitive. He’s going to make some mistakes and panic at times and you better build a team that reduces the chance for him to make mistakes. The 49ers did, it’s not impossible.”
  • 49ers’ LB Jordan Willis spoke about his playoff heroics: “A lot of people persevered to get here, all the work the coaches put in, from all the criticism Shanahan, Garoppolo and players on defense have taken. They’ve worked hard to dig us out of this mess.” (Cam Inman)


Rams HC Sean McVay is 3-7 against the 49ers and HC Kyle Shanahan but isn’t concerned that his former co-worker has gotten the best of him.

“No,” McVay said, via “What I do have is respect for these guys. They’ve done a great job. You look at it, you got to play well in that three-and-a-half-hour window that we’re allotted. You look at the last time that we played them, (we) didn’t finish the game. This is a really good football team. We have a lot of respect for them. We’re competing and preparing to the best of our ability to go out and see if we can advance. But this is a really good team. Kyle is an excellent coach. They (have) great players, great coaches, good schemes. It’s why they’re in the NFC Championship. I think it’s about execution. I think the key things that are always instrumental in the outcomes of games are going to be vital — tackling well, trying to break tackles, efficiency on early downs, staying connected on blocks, being able to finish those turnovers, and then the situational football. Whether you’re talking about red zone, third downs, two-minute end of the half (and) end of the game — those are the things it’s going to be about. Good, clean, sharp execution. And I agree. I think both teams are very familiar. There are good schemes, there are great players. It’s why we’re in this position. Let’s go roll it out and see who plays the best in that three-and-a-half-hour window and gives themselves the chance to advance.”


Seahawks S Quandre Diggs heard his leg break in Week 18 and instantly thought about his family, who he said was more worried than he was. He has no doubts that he will return next year, as the 29-year-old was just named to his second Pro Bowl.

Diggs also praised teammates like WR Tyler Lockett who stayed behind with him during the surgery for his broken leg following the game.

“I’ve been through injuries before, I’ve been through offseason rehabs before, so for me, it’s just another obstacle that I’ll push through and get through and come back better,” Diggs said, via John Boyle of “I’ve got a broken bone; it’s not like I tore an ACL or Achilles or anything. I’ve got a broken leg, and with my ankle it’s just the same as if I would have had ankle surgery — guys get ankle surgery every offseason. It’s just one of those things, a four to five-month recovery where, by the time training camp rolls around, I’ll be 100 percent ready to go.”

Diggs is highly thought of by his teammates in Seattle, as evidenced by how crushed they were after his injury. Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett even stayed behind in the hospital with Diggs after the game, which was on the road. 

“I’m blessed, man. I played the most snaps in the NFL in the regular season this year. I’ve got great people around me, great family, great friends. I just celebrated a birthday — my girlfriend threw me a big surprise birthday party. I have a lot of positivity around me, and I have a lot of great people around me, so for me, there’s no need to really stress when I’ve already handled everything I can handle on my side of things,” Diggs said. “So I’ve just got to bounce back. It’s big being able to know you have the respect around the league from your peers, those guys look at you as one of the best in the world and they respect you for just being a real guy, being who I am every day. That’s the dope part for me, that’s all I’ve ever wanted in this league is just to be respected by my peers and be respected by my coaches. I’ve never cared about the accomplishments and all of that but being respected, that’s all you can ask for in your career.”

Diggs made a little bit of noise during training camp while entering his contract year this past season. What his value ultimately ends up being will be an interesting case to follow this offseason. He made it clear he doesn’t want to take too much of a discount. 

“No question (I want to be back). If we can make it work and it works out for both sides, and I feel fairly compensated knowing that I’m a two-time Pro-Bowler, (received) All-Pro votes, and one of the best, if not the best free safety in the NFL — I have to be compensated as well, and I feel like I did everything the right way to be compensated as well,” he said. “If it works out and they say they want to do it, let’s get it done.”

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  1. Seahawks need big moves to get back
    on track! Then firing defense couch’s!
    Also 49ers are a dangerous Team who
    hungry no doubt! However the Team who
    has a really Dangerous QT is The Rams
    Matt Stafford he really wanting to show
    everyone he no slouch! He a winner.
    Watch out for him. Also watch out
    for underdog Bengals that might just
    Compete and maybe up set the Chiefs
    Apple Cart! If the Chiefs win they must
    win as a team no just QT Mahomes passing?

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