In what has been a tight race for NFL Defensive Player of the Year, San Francisco 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa has at least one vocal supporter in his own locker room.
George Kittle told reporters Bosa "secured his defensive MVP" with a dominant performance in Saturday's 37-20 victory over the Washington Commanders.
The 49ers tight end went on to say he doesn't see a reason why Bosa shouldn't be in the MVP conversation:
Nick Wagoner @nwagoner
<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/49ers?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#49ers</a> TE George Kittle on Nick Bosa: "I think today secured his defensive MVP. I don't know how it doesn't. If you look at what he does every Sunday compared to everyone else around the league whether it's offense or defense, I don't know why he's not in the MVP conversation."
While it seems unlikely Bosa—or any defensive player—will garner much MVP discussion, he would presumably be one of the few players on that side of that ball who could steal a vote away from one of the top quarterbacks.
It's assumed the voting for Defensive Player of the Year will come down to a battle between Bosa and Dallas Cowboys star Micah Parsons. Other players who could get into the mix include New York Jets cornerback Sauce Gardner, Kansas City Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones and Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Maxx Crosby.
If we go with the assumption that Bosa and Parsons have pulled ahead of the pack, the 49ers star certainly has a statistical advantage. His two sacks on Saturday brought his league-leading total up to 17.5 for the season.
Bosa also added four quarterback hits and two tackles for loss against the Commanders. He is up to 42 quarterback hits and 18 tackles on the season. The three-time Pro Bowler has put up those stats despite missing one game in Week 6 because of a groin injury.
Parsons didn't have a sack, quarterback hit or a tackle for loss on Saturday against the Philadelphia Eagles. The 23-year-old has 24 quarterback hits, 14 tackles for loss and 13 sacks overall. He has played in all 15 games for the Cowboys this season.
Since returning to the lineup in Week 7, Bosa has recorded at least one sack in eight of the past nine games.
Bosa could also benefit from being arguably the best player on what has been the NFL's best defense this season. San Francisco allowed 20 points to the Commanders, ending its streak of seven consecutive games holding opponents to 17 points or fewer.
San Francisco's defense ranks first in yards allowed (290.3 per game), rushing yards (75.0) and points allowed (15.3). It is tied for third in turnover differential (+9) and tied for fourth in takeaways (24).
The 49ers haven't had a Defensive Player of the Year winner since Dana Stubblefield in 1997.