Greenlaw projects to be the 49ers' starting strong outside linebacker following the release of Malcolm Smith on Tuesday.
Greenlaw was primarily competing with Smith for the starting linebacker job this preseason, so the latter's release all but confirms that the job is the rookie's to lose. The 2019 fifth-round pick impressed early in camp and during the preseason, displaying his plus athleticism when given opportunities to play with the first-team defense in place of Kwon Alexander (knee), who was being eased back into action following knee surgery. Even if Greenlaw ends up starting, he will only be used in base 4-3 formations, which will limit his snap count and tackle totals compared to starters Fred Warner and the aforementioned Alexander.
Greenlaw (stinger) tallied five tackles (two solo) in Monday's preseason win over Denver.
Greenlaw suffered the minor injury during practice this week, but he was deemed healthy enough to compete Monday. The rookie got some run with the first-team defense, as Kwon Alexander (knee) continues to be rested heading toward the regular season. Greenlaw's true competition is Malcolm Smith, as the two battle for the less-prominent starting strong linebacker position this year.
Greenlaw was limited to just individual drills during Wednesday's practice as he nurses a stinger, Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com reports.
It's unclear how he picked up the injury, but the team is likely giving him a chance to recover following the first preseason game. The Arkansas product was selected in the fifth-round during April's draft, and is looking to secure not only a roster spot, but a prominent role in the defense. Expect the team to continue to update Greenlaw's status as his health progresses.
The 49ers selected Greenlaw in the fifth round of the 2019 NFL Draft, 148th overall.
The Arkansas product heads to the Bay Area after a productive four-year career with the Razorbacks. Greenlaw was recruited as a safety and is somewhat undersized for a linebacker at 5-foot-11 and 237 pounds, but he has good instincts and can help in coverage as well. He will likely begin his career as a special teamer.
|7||10/20/19||@ WAS||1:00 pm|
|9||10/31/19||@ ARI||8:20 pm|
|13||12/1/19||@ BAL||1:00 pm|
|14||12/8/19||@ NO||1:00 pm|
|17||12/29/19||@ SEA||4:25 pm|
|2019||San Francisco 49ers||5||11||5.0||6||0||0||0||0.0||0||0||0|