This is the second part in a series that spotlights three 49ers-Rams matchups to watch Monday, 5:30 p.m. (PT), at Edwards Jones Dome, St. Louis.
49ers LB Aaron Lynch vs. Rams RT Joe Barksdale
Tale of the tape
Lynch (59): 6 foot 6, 270 pounds, rookie, South Florida
Barksdale (72): 6 foot 5, 326 pounds, fourth season, LSU
Lynch has earned a significant role in the 49ers’ defense as a nickel pass rusher. Although he does not have a sack, yet, he has managed to generate good pass rush. And that has led to the 49ers moving him into the role that Corey Lemonier held for the first three games of the season. Lynch has done a good job of getting his hands up to knock down passes at the line of scrimmage.
“I’m tall. I’m long. I did it a lot of times in college,” Lynch said. “We definitely go over ball disruption and takeaways. It’s really emphasized here with the 49ers to get your hands up.”
Barksdale has done a very good job in the run game and in pass protection. He surrendered no sacks and just three quarterback hits in the Rams’ first four games. Barksdale ranks as the No. 2 offensive tackle in the NFL, according to Pro Football Focus' grading system.
Barksdale will be going up against 49ers outside linebacker Ahmad Brooks on most base downs, but he will face Lynch in passing situations. The amount of pressure Lynch is able to put on Rams quarterback Austin Davis could be a big key against a team that likes to throw the ball down the field.