Why 49ers are more impressive than Eagles in 2023 to Steve Mariucci originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area
Have the 49ers edged the Philadelphia Eagles as the team to beat in the NFC? Former NFL head coach Steve Mariucci believes so.
On NFL Network’s “GameDay Morning,” Mariucci was asked where Philadelphia currently stands in the NFC hierarchy.
“I think they’re an excellent team, but you know what, the team in my mind in the NFC would be the Niners,” Mariucci said. “And it’s a small sample size so far, right? We could talk about their [49ers] offensive weapons all day long, but I want to talk about the Niner defense because Nick Bosa came back in the nick of time.”
In their Week 1 victory over the Steelers, the 49ers’ defense held the Steelers to just seven points. They have elite playmakers all over the field, with a 2022 first-team All-Pro selections at all three levels of their defense.
“Fred Warner is an animal,” Mariucci said. “Javon Hargrave, what an acquisition that was, and then a guy named Drake Jackson had three sacks for these guys. Kenny Pickett was sacked five times, and 23 pressures Kurt [Warner], do you still want to come back, 23 pressures you have to play against the 49ers defense.”
San Francisco left Mariucci very impressed with their opening week performance, and their well-earned reputation as one of the most formidable defenses in the league has carried over into this season.
The 49ers improved to 2-0 on Sunday with a 30-23 victory over the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium. The Eagles jumped out to a 2-0 start after being crowned conference champions last season and appear well on their way to another postseason appearance.
The 49ers’ Week 13 matchup in Philadelphia could prove pivotal in shaping which road the NFC playoffs run through.
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