Aaron Lynch has been an enigma for the 49ers since he joined the team in 2014.
In his first two seasons, the defensive lineman logged a combined 12.5 sacks. An impressive feat that was subsequently tempered by a suspension last July for failing to adhere to the NFL’s substance-abuse policy.
During the offseason workout program in May, Grant Cohn of the Santa-Rosa Press Democrat speculated that Lynch was overweight and in danger of being cut.
Maybe Lynch heard the whispers and used them as motivation, or perhaps he was never that far off from his playing weight, but his new coach Kyle Shanahan is happy with the lineman’s fitness after seeing him in action during the early days of training camp.
Same goes for offensive lineman Trent Brown.
“They came back exactly where we asked them to be. It took a lot of work for both of them, but they put it in,” the first-year coach said after Monday’s session in Santa Clara. “I was very proud of them, what they did. It gives them the chance to have a good season.”
Shanahan tempered that assessment by saying it’ll be an everyday struggle for the pair. But if Lynch especially could put his dreadful 2016 campaign behind him, it could finally offer some answers for a team that desperately needs them on the line.
Another safety injured
The 49ers are already dealing with a limited group of safeties after injuries to Jimmie Ward and Eric Reid.
Now, the team will hope Jaquiski Tartt mends quickly after he hurt his ribs breaking up a pass during Monday’s practice.
Shanahan didn’t have many details about the severity of the injury in his media session, just saying it’s “ribs-type stuff” and that the training staff will deal with it.john lynchkyle shanahanNFLSan Francisco 49ers