[Top 50] # 50: Fred Warner, the modern linebacker | Touchdown Actu (NFL Actu)

From May 15 to July 3, TDActu presents its Top 50 NFL players. To arrive at this ranking, each member of the editorial staff voted for the 50 players they would like to have on their team to start the coming season. These rankings were then compiled to form the final Top 50. The opportunity to debate, but also to present 50 profiles to those new to the NFL.

Fred Warner – Linebacker – San Francisco 49ers

ID card : 24 years – 1.91 cm – 104 kg

Draft: n ° 70 in the 3rd round of the 2018 Draft – BYU

CV: first Team All-Pro (2020)

2020 stats: 125 tackles, 2 interceptions, 1 sack, 6 defended passes, 1 forced fumble in 16 games.

Career stats: 367 tackles, 3 interceptions, 4 sacks, 21 defended passes, 5 forced fumbles in 48 games.

Why is he here?

Fred Warner is the very definition of a modern linebacker. He excels in passing coverage. He is also ranked by Pro Football Focus as the best in this field at his post. His athletic abilities allow him to cover tight ends, runners and receivers on passing situations.

He is certainly not an elite defender against the race, but his steady progress in this area allows him to be on the field during all three attempts. Warner doesn’t look like the second-curtain tackle machines that can be found all over the league, but does well in the exercise.

Its other great strength is its leadership. Since his draft in the 3rd round in 2018, he has established himself as a middle linebacker and is the one who calls the signals. Less prominent in 2019 than his friends Nick Bosa, Richard Sherman and DeForest Buckner, he took advantage of the absences of the first two and the departure of the third to establish himself as the boss of the defense of San Francisco.

What objective in 2021?

After a great 2020 season, 2021 must be the year of the explosion for Fred Warner. If he plays every game, as he did in his first three seasons in the league, he can establish himself as the very best inside linebacker in the NFL.

If his pass coverage is in place, there are still areas for improvement in his game. If he wants to become even more complete, Warner will have to improve his game against the run which, if he is not. catastrophic, remains perfectible.

Fred Warner has already played 3 seasons in the NFL, which means he is eligible for a contract extension. Because of his performance, the 49ers will have to break the bank to keep Warner in red and gold. To make him, in the long term, the successor of Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman.

Heard in the editorial

“The one we didn’t see coming. In all discretion, he has established himself as one of the best linebackers in the league and one of the most versatile. If he confirms his excellent level against the pass in 2021, he will be able to claim the title of best linebacker in the league. «  Raphaël Masmejean.

“Serial tackle and very good in coverage. The definition of what we call « modern linebacker ». «  Jean-Michel Bougeard.

“The boss of the defense of San Francisco. It takes less light than other players, but is essential to the Niners’ defensive system. «  Elioth Salmon.

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