The Offensive Line is a Position of Strength Again
Last year the San Francisco 49ers struggled to run the ball. And they fared even worse when trying to protect the quarterback. Your game manager of choice must be protected long enough if you want him to manage the game effectively.
In four preseason games, the offensive front has only given up a total of six quarterback sacks. That’s an average of 1.5 per game. Last year, the season average was more than three per game.
In 2015, the team was plagued with injury. And it stuck with the inconsistent play of Erik Pears and Jordan Devey — two players who were cut lose for obvious reasons.
After four weeks of preseason play, the starting offensive line figures to something like this: tackle Joe Staley, guard Zane Beadles, center Daniel Kilgore, guard Anthony Davis and tackle Trent Brown.
The overhaul began with the addition of Beadles and the drafting of former Stanford Cardinal Josh Garnett. Though he doesn’t figure to be starter in his first year, he will see significant time as a rookie and is the future of the guard position on the left side.
The worst play on the offensive line last year came from the right side. The only consistency the right guard and tackle position saw was the folding of the pocket. If Brown can pick up where he left off last year, the right tackle position should be one of great strength.
Last but not least, the offseason move that pulled this whole line together was the return of right tackle Anthony Davis. His knowledge of the game, and his run and pass protection, figures to give this squad the boost that was missing last year. He not only dropped 40 pounds, but he agreed to move to the guard position to further the growth of Brown.
Next: The Pass Rush is Back