49ers DC Steve Wilks is “Confident” Ambry Thomas Bounces Back vs. Lions

Ambry Thomas was the weakest link on defense for the 49ers against the Packers.

49ers DC Steve Wilks is "Confident" Ambry Thomas Bounces Back vs. Lions

It was bizarre to see from him considering he has been a sound player since being installed as the starter in Week 10. Thomas gave himself a throwback performance to the player he was prior to that. He was easily an Achilles heel for the defense that day, and it’s not like the Packers have amazing receivers.

The Lions, however, do have amazing receivers that can do damage. There surely is some concern with Thomas when the 49ers matchup with the Lions in the NFC championship game. However, defensive coordinator Steve Wilks doesn’t feel that way at all. In fact, he is “very confident” that Thomas will bounce back on Sunday against the Lions and look like the cornerback he has shown for the last two months.

“He didn’t have his best game as we all saw,” said Wilks. “He’s pretty resilient in his demeanor and I know he is going to bounce back strong. Again, we have to be able to get over the mindset of his wrist and he has to go out there and play. But, I’m very confident that he’s going to go back out there and respond this week.”

I would like to believe in what Wilks is saying, but I am skeptical of Thomas’ ability to bounce back. What led Thomas to play poorly looked more to be from a mental standpoint. The pressure of the playoffs likely got to him. Thomas was in position on a couple of passes aimed his way, but he failed to make a play. Instead he was drawing penalties or doing something that was head scratching.

It was uncharacteristic of him given how well he has played this season. I simply chalk it up to the playoff pressure, and that isn’t going away against the Lions. In fact, the pressure increases with a trip to the Super Bowl on the line. The 49ers don’t often have their corners shadow receivers, but for this game they must place Charvarius Ward on Amon-Ra St. Brown to avoid Thomas being on him. Otherwise, Jared Goff is going to have a field day targeting him.

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