The San Francisco 49ers defensive line will single-handedly win them a game or two this season. Is that a hot take? It shouldn’t be. You could make an argument this already happened in 2019. The Niners enter 2020 with better depth than they did a season ago. While there is no replacing DeForest Buckner, I’m going to reserve judgment on Javon Kinlaw until after a few games.

Generally speaking, being a lineman on either side of the ball is one of the biggest adjustments going from college to the pros. Kinlaw’s transition should be easier than most having played in the SEC. However, there are still more accountants and future 9-5 workers Kinlaw faced during his time at South Carolina than players he’d be lining up against on Sundays. The beauty of drafting Kinlaw on this team is that he doesn’t have to be “the guy” right out of the gate. Kinlaw doesn’t even have to be the second-best threat. That’s a luxury few teams besides San Francisco have.

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