Defensive Coordinator DeMeco Ryans Press Conference
Defensive Coordinator DeMeco Ryans
Press Conference – December 1, 2022
San Francisco 49ers
DL Nick Bosa, player of the month. I’m sure you’re not surprised, but aside from the numbers, what does he bring to the defense?
“I think Nick, most of all, he brings a confidence and a true playmaker that every defense needs. Every defense, if you’re going to be a great defense, you need that guy on the edge who can rush the passer, who can get at the quarterback at very critical moments, at all times throughout the game. And that’s what Nick provides for us, he can go close out games like he did in our last game versus the Saints and that’s what Nick provides. He’s a big-time playmaker in his league, no matter who he goes against, he always has a chance to win, so that’s what he brings to our team.”
The sacks are noticeable and all that, but how about the run defense? You guys have the top run defense in the league and how much a part does he play in that?
“Yeah, for all of our defensive lineman, like you can’t rush a passer unless you stop the run, so the run game is always our first priority and Nick is one of our better guys at setting the edge, resetting the line of scrimmage and being able to make plays as well. Nick is your all-around player, when it comes to the run game, pass game, he can do it all and that’s what makes him a special player.”
I’m sure you’ve seen all the some of the mic’d up things that are done with Nick and some of the things that he says out there. Has he ever said anything during the course of the game that made you smile or laugh or are you too intense for that?
“No, we always keep it light, keep it fun. Nick is the same person. That’s what’s cool about him. Like the game, the moment is not too big and he doesn’t have to try to be someone that he’s not. So he’s himself just like he is at practice. He’s the same, has a little humor about himself and he keeps it fun. I think that allows him to play the way he plays because he’s just loose. He understands his opponent, understands who he’s going against and he knows how to beat that guy. And he has fun winning, so it’s always fun to see Nick making plays because I’m always trying to put him in positions to make even more plays. I’m always talking to him about, Hey, what can we do now? Change things up to get him in a different position to be able to make plays.”
The Dolphins seem to have an ability to not only push the ball down the field, but get the ball out quick, which would seem to kind of run counter on each other. I realize a lot of that’s intermediate stuff, but how are they able to kind of walk that line?
“I think the Dolphins, their offense is very efficient because of the quarterback. [Miami Dolphins QB] Tua [Tagovailoa] is very efficient at not only getting the ball out quick, but the accuracy and the way he delivers the ball that allows the offense to be as efficient as they are. And you add the playmakers in that he has with 10 [Miami Dolphins WR Tyreek Hill], 17 [Miami Dolphins WR Jaylen Waddle], 31 [Miami Dolphins RB Raheem Mostert], those guys all have elite speed and big-time playmaking ability where they can take an intermediate throw and they can make a guy miss and go to the house. Not all offenses have that, I think that’s where this offense really lights it up because each throw, it doesn’t have to be a 50-yard bomb down the field, it can be a screen behind the line of scrimmage, and these guys have the speed and the playmaking ability to make guys miss and go to the house.”
When you watch their offense on film, do you say that’s our offensive scheme or does it look different?
“Yeah, I mean it is. It’s our offensive scheme and [Miami Dolphins Head Coach Mike] McDaniel does a really good job of mixing things up. Not too many plays are the same. He finds a way to get different players in different positions, a lot of different looks, a lot of different motions to get defenses confused and looking at all these things that are going on, so he does a good job of creating space. By moving guys around, making guys have to communicate and he hits you with any type of play, whether it’s run game, pass game, he makes the play action marry up with the run game, which makes it even more difficult, so just shout out to McDaniel. He’s doing a really good job there.”
What’s the challenge there in knowing that as you prepare your guys, the stuff that they put on film could be stuff that they’re using to set up something completely different?
“Yeah, there’s a lot of things that he probably can do that we haven’t seen, so a lot of things you can’t worry about. For us, it always goes back, you probably hear me say this every week, but it goes back to us and just playing our fundamentals, our technique and being exactly where we’re supposed to be. Like that doesn’t change for us each week and I want to keep it consistent with our guys to make sure we’re playing as fast as we can play, so really, it doesn’t matter what they do or what they present. It doesn’t matter, it’s about us and how we handle those things.”
I know he’s the fastest receiver in the league, but what is it about Tyreek and his speed that just makes him such a threat?
“His speed is just different from anybody you’ve seen in the NFL. There are fast guys in the NFL, but then there’s Tyreek’s speed and it’s just on another level. Nobody runs as fast as him. The routes that he’s able to run, like he’s behind the line of scrimmage and he’s able to run deep routes from there and it’s impressive. It’s impressive and it’s a special talent that he has. No one else in the league has that ability that Tyreek has, his ability to separate and not only is it just his speed, but he is very strong. When he gets the ball in his hands, he is a very strong runner and he can bounce off of tackles and make guys miss.”
You’ve had DL Arik Armstead back for three practices now. How does he look, first of all, and how important can it be to have him for the stretch run?
“It’s good to have Armstead back out at practice. It’s just good to see him, what he’s battled through to get back. It’s been a long road for him, so it’s just good to have him back out there and if we can have him on Sunday, of course that’s a plus for us. If we get an all-pro player who can help our defense that would be a huge lift for us, so I’m excited for Armstead and just him working his way back in.”
The only criticism of your defense recently will be that when you played the Chiefs, one of the best offenses in the NFL, they scored 44. This is another high-powered offense, what did you guys learn or take away from that Chiefs experience that you can apply on Sunday?
“From the Chiefs game, guys just have to do their job and tackle. I’d give you more detail, but it’s simple as that. In the Chiefs game, what we didn’t do, we didn’t get off the field on third down because we didn’t make plays, we busted coverages. We weren’t where we supposed to be. We didn’t do our job and when you don’t do your job consistently, you’ll get embarrassed as we did in that Chiefs game. And it’s nothing that they did that surprised us, it’s guys just being on it each and every snap.”
The way you’ve played since then though, would indicate that that game, I don’t if it had a positive effect, but you guys took the right things out of it.
“Yeah, each week is different for me. Each week is different. We had a bad week. It happens in the NFL. It happens, you have bad weeks and that’s what I look at the Chiefs game was it was a bad week and we did not play up to our standard, so it’s about our guys holding up our standard each and every week. And if we do that, we make it tough on offenses to go against us because we’re just doing what we’re supposed to do, not anybody playing hero ball or doing anything special, it’s just guys just being where they’re supposed to be. Playing together, playing for each other, when we do that, we’re a special unit.”
What’s the key on those intermediate crossers? Is it LB Fred Warner and LB Dre Greenlaw getting back deep enough to kind of disrupt things in the middle there?
“I think with those, it’s not only the linebackers, it’s safeties, it’s corners, it’s all the back seven guys being exactly where they’re supposed to be. Playing with the proper depth, and just being exactly where they’re supposed to be, whichever coverage we play, just being detailed and being where you’re supposed to be in coverage and nobody has to do more than they’re asked to do and I think that’s how you handle all the intermediate stuff.”
Getting all the practice you get against that in training camp, do you kind of feel that your defense is well versed in that sort of attack?
“When you look at our defense, I think we’re ready for whatever may come our way. I know the Dolphins are a really good offense, but it’s things that we’ve seen before. And the way they’re being effective, I said they are being efficient with timing, with placement of the ball, with accuracy. They are on it. As well as they’re on it, defensively, we have to be on it 10 times better as they are on it and if we do that we’ll like the results of the game.”
Does your familiarity with the players and the scheme make it easier to prepare or make it even more challenging?
“It doesn’t really cross my mind. Once we step out there, it’s not about those guys, it doesn’t matter. Guys got on Dolphins jerseys and we have to be what we’re supposed to be. Play physical, play fast, play together and relentless. Everything else will take care of itself. It really doesn’t matter who’s under the helmet across from us. We’re just excited to play another football game. We’re excited to go out here in front of our fans and put out a good performance for them.”