Without any shadow of a doubt, the most powerful unit on the San Francisco 49ers outfit is the defensive line.
Strengthened with the investments of several first-round NFL Draft picks and backed up by impressive depth that could be competing for starting roles elsewhere, the defensive identity of San Francisco rests on the front four being able to fight its way to the quarterback without needing to rely on blitzing.
In 2019, it served the 49ers very well. The defense was an integral reason the team made it to the Super Bowl, and they’ve done a good job to keep the defensive line as strong in 2020.
The biggest change, of course, is defensive tackle DeForest Buckner being traded to the Indianapolis Colts due to salary cap considerations. Buckner was the heart of the 49ers defense and is not easily replaced.
But the 49ers will try anyway and made another investment on the first night of the draft to bolster the defensive trenches.
So let’s look at the ideal starting four for San Francisco.