The San Francisco 49ers have signed Tavon Wilson to a one-year contract, according to NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport. Wilson spent his final season with the Indianapolis Colts after starting his nine-year career with the New England Patriots.
Wilson played 15 games (two starts) with the Colts in 2020. He recorded 26 tackles, a fiddly recovery, and a pass separation in limited action. The 49ers have been looking for secondary depth, with NFL veterans like Richard Sherman and Jaquiski Tartt joining the free agency. Wilson brings experience to serve in either a reserve or a starting role.
Before joining the Colts, Wilson started 13 games with the Detroit Lions in 2019. Most importantly, he established strong security for Lions. The organization gave him the best opportunity to start his career.
Wilson started 39 of 56 games during his four seasons with the Lions. He entered the NFL as a second round hit from Illinois. He’s joining a growing list of free agents to join the 49ers this off-season. The 49ers re-signed with Trent Williams and agreed on Alex Mack to bolster the offensive line.
There’s a lot to like about Wilson. Colt’s head coach, Frank Reich, believed Wilson gave secondary school a special energy. He felt the Wilson fit the Colts profile as a leader and great teammate last season.
“You can feel his presence back there immediately,” said Indianapolis coach Frank Reich to local reporters last season about the Indianapolis Star. “He’s a player who fits our culture: tough, smart, great team-mate, versatile. He is exactly what we are looking for. “
Wilson will have the opportunity to play a role with the 49ers at training camp under new defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans. The former NFL star has his first chance to lead the defense after Robert Saleh became the New York Jets head coach.
Several 49ers are looking forward to playing under Ryans this season. The 49ers’ standout Fred Warner said Ryans helped him develop as he could pinpoint key areas in his overall game.
“He’s just such a smart guy, one of the brightest minds I’ve ever seen,” Warner said of the 49ers Unscripted Podcast. “I met him there with Saleh. Just the fact that DeMeco, who plays at such a high level in the NFL, has so much respect for a guy like that. But to be able to teach the way he does .
“I always respect coaches who have the ability to teach just because it’s so easy to yell at someone. But someone who can actually sit down with you and actually go through, “Okay, why did you get this wrong” or “What techniques do you need to use” and really break it down for you. Your players are so much more responsive to you and he takes that attitude he had as a linebacker in the league and brings it to the coach. “
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Wilson can improve his game under Ryans this season too. He brings with him experience that, in addition to Ryan’s philosophy, can help help the younger players on the squad develop further in the coming season.