- Bill Williamson, ESPN Staff Writer
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In an Insider piece, Pro Football Focus ranks San Francisco 49ers’ defensive lineman Justin Smith as the second best player in the NFL who is 34 or older. Smith, who turned 34 in September, is ranked only behind Denver quarterback Peyton Manning.
Smith is having another big season. His statistics may not show it, but Smith is disruptive on every play. He causes chaos for the offensive line. I think he still has a couple of seasons left as he is showing he is still a huge factor on a dominant defense.
In other 49ers’ notes:
• As he often is, 49ers punter Andy Lee was an honorable mention ESPN.com Punter of the Week. Continuing a tremendous season, Lee punted four times Sunday against St. Louis and pinned the Rams on their own 3 and own 8 in the final seven minutes of the fourth quarter. St. Louis star returner Tavon Austin was able to return just one punt.
• According to ESPN Stats & Information, tight end Vernon Davis joined former receivers Jerry Rice and Terrell Owens as the only 49ers with multiple seasons of 10-plus receiving touchdowns in the past 40 years.
• The 49ers are currently on pace to have the 26th pick in the first round of the May draft. Click here for the full 2014 draft order through Week 13.