San Francisco 49ers defender Patrick Willis reacts near the end of a 16-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons in an NFL football game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta, Sunday, Oct. 3, 2010.
When an offense faces a premier defensive lineman or pass rusher, it can double-team him to keep him from dominating.
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But San Francisco's best defensive player, Patrick Willis, presents a different problem because as an inside linebacker it's more difficult for an offense to take him out of the game as a run defender. He's shielded from blockers by defensive linemen in the 49ers' 3-4 scheme, ...