Niner Noise presents a new five-part series: The 5 Most Underrated San Francisco 49ers on the current roster. Today our third most underrated Niner: Alex Boone.
Last year at this time, the offensive line and right guard position of the 49ers was a big question mark. After Adam Snyder departed via free agency to the Arizona Cardinals, the 49ers had an open competition for the only starting position on offense. Many experts chided the 49ers for not using a high draft pick on a guard to solidify the offensive line, but General Manager Trent Baalke had an ace up his sleeve – the backup or “swing” tackle – Boone.
Boone was an undrafted free agent from Ohio State University, a guy that enjoyed the bottom of the bottle more than exercising and Football, but after his rookie year he made the life change to focus on being healthy and his Football career. After a transformation, Boone was the “swing” tackle and was thought to be too tall to be a guard, when leverage is such an imporant part of playing the position. Boone shocked everyone, except the Niners Front Office when he elevated his game and became one of the best guards in the NFL.
In just his second year at the position, it is hard to see the ceiling on his play at right guard. If Boone can keep getting better and better — like he has in every year he’s been a professional — the best offensive line in the NFL can put more of a gap between them and the rest of the league.
Visit Niner Noise tomorrow for our penultimate selection on the Top 5 Most Underrated 49ers.