The 49ers needed pass rush help on the edge after multiple injuries left them relatively thin at the position. After a couple free agent signings didn’t work out, San Francisco made a trade with the New York Jets to acquire edge rusher Jordan Willis. While It wasn’t a blockbuster move to acquire a Pro Bowler. In fact, Willis has had a somewhat disappointing career since the Bengals selected him in the third round of the 2017 NFL draft. However, 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh sees untapped potential in the 25-year-old.

Willis has just 44 pressures and four sacks in 43 career games according to Pro Football Focus, but Saleh on Thursday explained that a change of scenery and defensive scheme should help the Kansas State product reach a new level in his NFL career.

“Just throughout his career so far, not to say that he hasn’t been used properly, but he’s such a versatile athlete than you can use him any which way,” Saleh told reporters in a video conference. “He’s just going to have the opportunity to do something that he hasn’t done. He’s played outside linebacker. He’s stood up. He’s dropped in coverage. He’s played some defensive end, different than the type of defensive end, it’s a different technique than we’ll teach him here, but he’s going to get an opportunity to just let loose and get off the ball and rush the passer and set edges and play to the style that we play.”

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