NFC Notes: Kyler Murray, Marvin Harrison Jr., Trey McBride, 49ers, Cardinals, Rams

49ers

49ers DL coach Kris Kocurek thinks veteran DT Maliek Collins was a good addition to their defense given he has familiarity with their system coming from the Texans under HC DeMeco Ryans

“I really liked him coming out of Nebraska — just the explosion that he can generate through his lower body. He jumps off the tape. He can play in the backfield, he can re-create the line of scrimmage and he’s really athletic on the back side to make plays,” he said via Matt Barrows and David Lombardi of The Athletic. “And then it’s the ability to manipulate things in the pass rush — you know, get a guard to lean one way and then beat him another. … I’ve always liked his skill set, I think his skill set is tailor-made to play the attack-style nature we play. And he’s played in some attack schemes throughout his career last year. He was down there in Houston, so there will be a lot of familiarity from working with DeMeco (Ryans) and those guys in Houston and then coming here and doing very similar type things.”

As for recently signed DT Jordan Elliott, Kocurek mentioned he gives them size on their interior line and can “dominate” single-blockers in run defense. 

“With Jordan — we really liked him coming out of college, out of Missouri. Then he got drafted by Cleveland and played for Chris Kiffin, who was my assistant in 2019. And then he played last year for Jim Schwartz, who’s one of my main mentors in the NFL and gave me my first job in the NFL. Just watching him there, I think Jordan just brings a size element that a guy like D.J. Jones brought to the middle of our defense — that 320-pound frame that also brings extreme explosion through contact to knock back double-teams and dominate singles in the run game. And then he’s a big man that really reduces the pocket into the quarterback’s lap with the strength and the power he’s able to generate through his lower body, through his hands.”

Cardinals

Cardinals OC Drew Petzing is excited about the amount of receiving weapons they have with Kyler Murray throwing to Marvin Harrison Jr. Michael Wilson, Greg Dortch, Zay Jones and Trey McBride.

“We’re going to petition the league for two footballs at all times,” Petzing said, via NFL.com. “No, but like you said, it’s a variety of skillsets, it’s guys that do different things well, so it allows us to be multiple and allows us to attack the defense in different ways. ‘Cause you never know exactly week to week where the weakness is or what you need to exploit, and if you have everybody doing one thing really well and that’s not the matchup that week, it’s hard to adjust. That’s certainly going to be a part of who we are and part of who we always want to be in all facets.”

Petzing said GM Monti Ossenfort and HC Jonathan Gannon have constructed a roster with a focus on winning, which means there will be a lot of demand for the football from Arizona’s offensive playmakers. 

“I think as we look to build the roster — I think this ultimately comes from the top from [general manager] Monti [Ossenfort] and [head coach Jonathan Gannon] — the focus is only going to be on winning, and that’s never going to change,” Petzing said. “And if that’s your No. 1 goal, that at the end of the day, if you’re winning and putting yourself in a position to win, guys are going to be happy they’re here and happy they’re contributing. Certainly, great players want the ball — you want them to want the ball. I’ve been around some guys that have always wanted the ball not because they’re selfish necessarily, but they felt like it was the best way to win. So, you want those players, you want those guys on your roster.”

In the end, Petzing doesn’t want Murray to worry about distributing the ball to specific players. 

“I said this to Kyler, actually I was joking, ’cause sometimes the quarterback can feel that pressure — ‘Oh, I gotta get this guy the ball’ — that’s not your job, that’s my job. As a coach, we can dictate some of that and will try to, your job is to play the play. Whatever the look is, go where the ball needs to go, make the decision that needs to be made — don’t worry about that stuff. I think, based on the character of the guys that we kind of talked about in this room, I don’t really worry about that.”

Rams

  • New Rams S John Johnson signed a one-year veteran salary benefit deal that includes a $1.21 million base salary, $615,000 of which is guaranteed, a $135,000 signing bonus and a $32,500 roster bonus. (Over The Cap)

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