USA TODAY Sports Weekly - - SPORTS -

Sto­ry­line of the week

What’s the rush? Whether or not the 49ers can find pass rush­ers off the edge might be the dif­fer­ence in whether they make a play­off push. LB Jeremiah At­taochu had a good out­ing in the third pre­sea­son game vs. the Colts. LB Cas­sius Marsh was also in­volved on one of the sacks. LB Pita Tau­moepenu also had a free run at Colts QB Phillip Walker but couldn’t bring him down. The in­te­rior rush with DL Solomon Thomas and DL De­For­est Buck­ner should help col­lapse the pocket from the mid­dle, but their ef­fec­tive­ness di­min­ishes greatly if there aren’t dis­rup­tive play­ers on the edge. This is a po­ten­tially fa­tal flaw.

Rookie watch

LB Fred Warner started at “mike” mid­dle line­backer along­side LB Mal­colm Smith and led the team with five tack­les and a tackle for loss. There were ques­tions as to whether Warner could take on a start­ing role while LB Reuben Fos­ter is sus­pended for two games. Warner might earn a start­ing job next to Fos­ter once he re­turns.

Kyle Mad­son, Nin­ers Wire

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