The 49ers play the Green Bay Packers in three days. In the meantime, I’ll break down a few key matchups a day.
LOLB Ahmad Brooks: 6-3, 259 pounds, 28 years old, 33 ½-inch arms
RT Bryan Bulaga: 6-5, 315 pounds, 23 years old, 33 ¼-inch arms.
Brooks has been a consistent pass rusher the last three seasons – averaging 6 sacks a season over that stretch. Bryan Bulaga gave up 11 sacks as a rookie in 2010, but he gave up just 1 last year. Now, he’s one of the best right tackles in the NFL. He does have short arms for the position, but they’re only a quarter-inch shorter than Brooks’ arms.
RT Anthony Davis: 6-5, 323 pounds, 22 years old, 34-inch arms
LOLB Nick Perry: 6-3, 265 pounds, 22 years old, 33-inch arms
Davis has struggled with speed rushers in the past, but Perry isn’t a speed rusher yet – he’s more of a power rusher. Davis is more powerful than Perry, so Davis should win this matchup. Perry should lose other matchups in this game as well. He was a defensive end in college, but he’s playing outside linebacker now. That means the Niners will try to expose him in pass coverage with their bread and butter play – the wheel route. It worked Week 2 last year against the Cowboys – Delanie Walker blew by outside linebacker Anthony Spencer, and Alex Smith hit Walker for an easy touchdown. Expect to see that same exact play on Sunday.