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Ryans prepares 49ers defense for uncertainty vs. Rams

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SANTA CLARA -- Defensive coordinator DeMeco Ryans is preparing his 49ers’ defense for one major unknown.

The Los Angeles Rams this week acquired veteran wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., who joined his new teammates on the practice field Friday.

On the same day Beckham joined the Rams, the club lost their No. 2 wide receiver, Robert Woods, to a torn ACL, ESPN reported.

Ryans began the week preparing his defense to face the Rams’ top three receivers of Cooper Kupp, Woods and Van Jefferson. It is not known if Beckham will suit up Monday night at Levi’s Stadium, but ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Saturday morning that OBJ would play.

“Man. I had so many more problems before him, and now there’s extra problems,” Ryans said Friday before learning of Woods’ reported season-ending injury.

“Everyone knows OBJ is a great player. He’s been a great player in this league for a long time. The Rams already presented us with a ton of problems with the guys they had, a pretty good team already. So for them to add OBJ is a really good add for them and a big challenge for us.”

Beckham appeared in six games with the Cleveland Browns this season. He caught 17 passes for 232 yards before his release this week.

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The 49ers figure to be in their nickel defense the entire game with the Rams deploying three-receiver formations on nearly every offensive play. Kupp is quarterback Matthew Stafford’s favorite target. He leads the NFL with 74 receptions for 1,019 yards and 10 touchdowns.


The 49ers have some uncertainty at cornerback with starters Josh Norman (rib) and Emmanuel Moseley (neck) limited in practices this week.

“We’re up for the challenge. We have to go out and just play our game and make plays,” Ryans said. “It doesn't really matter who lines up across from us. It's just all about our mindset, our mentality. Going against these guys, we just have to be ready to go work, play our technique, play with great effort, play together and we'll be fine.”

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