Making the Call on the 49ers’ Remaining Free Agents
The 49ers’ offensive line was a depressing shadow of its former self in 2015, allowing 53 sacks of Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert in season in which San Francisco finished No. 31 in the league in total offense.
But guard Alex Boone, along with Joe Staley, was among the better players up front for the Niners during the campaign, giving up nine quarterback hurries, five hits and three sacks – per Pro Football Focus – before injury saw him miss the last three games.
Boone, who held out prior to the 2014 season, is now poised to hit the market and – with the 49ers having previously shown themselves unwilling to overpay for linemen – it seems improbable he will be back with San Francisco in 2016.
The Niners let Mike Iupati, who received a five-year $40million contract with $22.5m guaranteed from the Arizona Cardinals, walk last offseason.
Boone is not on the same level as Iupati and is unlikely to get the same kind of deal but should still receive plenty of attention from teams aiming to boost their O-line on the open market. San Francisco does have some young talent in the trenches in Andrew Tiller and Trenton Brown – who could kick inside from tackle should Anthony Davis file for reinstatement – and will likely put its faith in its other options rather than try to come to terms with Boone.
Next: Reggie Bush