Armstead, Dwelley ready for Niners to be back in full force


SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KTXL) — San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan may finally have the no. 2 tight end he’s needed to support all-pro George Kittle in Ross Dwelley.

“Ross is a very dependable guy who has as good of hands as anyone on our team. If the quarterbacks put it there, and the guys not by him, rarely is he not going to make that play, so he gets more confidence each year,” Shanahan said. “We had to throw him into a bunch of roles last year with Kittle being out so long, and the more roles he gets thrown in the more he’ll surprise you and the better he gets.”

“It’s the same every off-season — trying to get bigger, faster, stronger. Trying to get in and out of my breaks better, and be stronger, you know, so I can take on those big d-ends in the trenches,” Dwelley said.

At age 26, Dwelley is in his fourth season with the Niners. And by the looks of things so far this training camp, he’ll command much more attention when San Francisco has the football.

Dwelley has even added 5-to-10 pounds of muscle to his 6-foot-5 frame.

“You know, being more comfortable in the offense, this being my fourth year in the system,” he said. “It all plays into that. Like I said, just adding to my tool-belt, not putting a ceiling on myself, just trying to get better every day and to go into each day with a growth mind-set.”

On the other side of the football, defensive lineman Arik Armstead, like Dwelley, played all 16 games last season for the Niners and was forced to do more because of all the injuries.

“We still played good football last year. You know we were a top-5 defense in the league,” Armstead said. “I think the sky is the limit for us once we get everyone back and then we can be dominant.”

Armstead only registered 3.5 sacks last season, but with a healthy Nick Bosa and Dee Ford, he should be able to dominate games like he did two seasons ago when he recorded 10 sacks.

“Playing with great players makes everything easier, you know. The attention is spread across, guys have to game-plan for multiple guys and I think the greatest thing about us is that we can give different looks to people. You know, I’m 6-8, 290 and Dee is electric-fast and a different body type, and so throwing those change ups at guys helps a lot,” he said.

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