Safety Donte Whitner Talks Man Coverage for the Super Bowl | STACK

Become a Better Athlete. Sign Up for our FREE Newsletter.

Inside the Super Bowl Playbook: San Francisco 49ers S Donte Whitner Talks Man Coverage

February 1, 2013

Must See Football Videos

Baltimore Ravens WR Torrey Smith has established himself as one of the NFL’s premier deep threats. This season, 43 percent of Smith’s receptions were good for 20-plus yards. The second-year pro averaged 17.4 yards per catch, which ranks fourth in the league among players with at least 30 receptions.

Smith will face a San Francisco 49ers defense that does not surrender big plays. According to Andy Benoit of Football Outsiders, Smith’s game-breaking speed may be a non-factor in Super Bowl XLVII.

From Benoit:

“Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones are not good against tight man coverage. Neither of them is physically strong, and both have trouble maintaining efficiency in their breaks. Smith showed … in the AFC title game that he can be completely eliminated by an underneath man defender who has safety help over the top. That’s how the Niners will play him this Sunday.”

Man coverage with two deep safeties is the scheme of choice for the Niners D. And “man coverage is also what teams have played against the Ravens all season,” Benoit reports.

Donte Whitner is one of those safeties who provides help over the top. So how will the 49ers secondary contain a burner with 4.43 40-Yard speed like Smith?

“It looks like a blur if you’re not focused on what you’re supposed to be watching,” Whitner says. “You have to know mentally what to focus on, and then focus your eyes on it.”

You can bet the physical 49ers secondary will jam Smith at the line of scrimmage in an effort to disrupt his rhythm.

And if the Niners stick to their guns with a heavy dose of man coverage, expect a quiet night from Smith and more targets to Ravens WR Anquan Boldin.

Check out STACK's continuing coverage of Super Bowl XLVII.


Zac Clark
- Zac Clark is STACK Media's Custom Content Manager. Prior to joining STACK in September 2008, he served as an editorial assistant for USA Hockey Magazine...
Zac Clark
- Zac Clark is STACK Media's Custom Content Manager. Prior to joining STACK in September 2008, he served as an editorial assistant for USA Hockey Magazine...
Must See
Why You Should Never Doubt Colin Kaepernick
Views: 18,362,723
Jadeveon Clowney on Making Big Hits
Views: 4,132,548
Perfect Dwyane Wade's Signature Euro Step
Views: 1,307,531

Featured Videos

Path to the Pros 2015: Marcus Mariota Views: 40,045
Greg Nixon's Full-Body Dumbbell Circuit Views: 316,352
Blake Griffin Interview and Cover Shoot Views: 578,060
Load More


STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers


Latest issues of STACK Magazine


Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice


Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes


Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Derrick Rose Explains How He Stays Positive
Views: 5,266,393
Dwight Howard Stays in the Gym All Night
Views: 4,225,908
Two-Ball Dribbling Drill With John Wall
Views: 3,360,797
Margus Hunt Benches 385 Pounds for Five Reps
Views: 19,571,570
Colin Kaepernick's Core Workout
Views: 880,435

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like

8 Pro Athletes Who Are Clearly Showing Off During Workouts

18 Strangest and Most Impressive Fitness Records

The Must-See Vines of the NCAA Tournament's Opening Rounds

WATCH: Tom Brady Bats Lefty, Practices Swing with Pedro Martinez

WATCH: Kyrie Irving Runs the Floor in High School

Nike Elite Collection: Wear It Like a Badge of Honor

The 7 Most Epic Smack Talk Fails in Sports History

Beating the Elements: The 6 Worst Weather Games of All Time

Social Media Roundup: Jameis Winston on a Jetpack

Mythcrusher: Does a Fast 40-Yard Dash Predict NFL Success?

WATCH: Steph Curry Drains 77 Straight 3-Pointers in Practice

6 Ways Sport Parents Are Doing It Wrong

Social Media Roundup: Adam Jones Channels His Inner Prince Akeem

Stephen Curry's Long-Range Game: Does Anyone Come Close?

The Most Amazing Vines From the First Round of the NBA Playoffs

Quick Review: Columbia Sportswear Turbodown Jacket

The 5 Most Embarrassing Plays in Sports

NHL All-Stars Drop In For a Game of Sledge Hockey

5 Superstars Who Spent Time on Awful Teams

Meet Ricky Johnson, Red Bull Frozen Rush Champion

My 3-Mile Run With Kendrick Lamar

WATCH: Never-Before-Seen J.J. Watt High School Highlight Reel

Social Media Roundup: Don't Call J.J. Watt 'Bae'

Who the Heck Is Grayson Allen?

7 Insanely Drastic MLB Body Transformations

WATCH: J.J. Watt's Insane 61-Inch Box Jump

Cleveland Browns Release New Uniforms

WATCH: James Harden Dominates in High School

I Ran the 40-Yard Dash at the NFL Combine and Sucked at It

Is the Armpocket Truly 'The Ultimate' Armband? Find Out Here.