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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Mike McGlinchey knows versatility key for 49ers earning jobs, looks to be more consistent

Aug 10, 2020 at 1:37 PM--

Proving one's versatility will be essential for any player looking to earn a roster spot with the San Francisco 49ers this season. It always has been. You never know when one or two injuries will force an offensive tackle to move inside or a tight end to play fullback.

That requirement is heightened across the league this year because no one knows what impact COVID-19 will have on a roster or the NFL as a whole. What if the virus knocks out half of your starting offensive line before a game?

"Versatility is going to be absolutely huge," offensive tackle Mike McGlinchey told reporters on Monday via a video conference call. "It's going to make or break guys having jobs, and make or break situations to fill our roster because we can get into any situation at any point this year. We're not just looking out for injuries; we're looking out for something that we can't really defend ourselves from, at times.

"To be able to have the ability to plug and play guys in different positions at different times is really going to allow us to keep moving as smoothly as operationally possible."

McGlinchey added that while the 49ers have tried to add players who have experience in the system, the lack of a traditional offseason has prevented newcomers from properly getting to know the teammates who line up next to them.

"In terms of the understanding of the greater picture of our offense, it's extremely helpful (to know the system)," McGlinchey said. "There's a lot of nuances to it. There's a lot of different techniques that need to be applied in different spots, and it's good to have a background in that to get the ball rolling for us."

As for McGlinchey personally, he knows what he needs to focus on to improve his own game. The offensive lineman feels his play at the end of last season was significantly better when compared to his play at the start of the season.

"The four weeks that I had off in the middle of the season last year (due to injury) really allowed me to focus on myself and how I was moving," McGlinchey explained,
how I was studying the game, how I was studying the nuances of our offense, and then how to apply them to what we do.

"I think for me, the player that I was in the back half of last season was a completely different player than the one that started it. And the whole goal, for me, is to continue to build on that and build on the success that I had, both run and pass, and just the overall consistency and domination of the blocks that I had.

"And then, obviously, like everybody else, the offseason is a time to be(come) a better athlete. Everything that you do has to put you in a situation where you're bettering yourself for the opportunity that you have on the field in the fall."

McGlinchey had an opportunity to utilize the 49ers' facilities and work with some of the training staff this offseason because he was categorized as a rehabbing player. That was due to the platelet-rich plasma (PRP) procedure he has done after each season.

Most players and staff had to stay away due to social-distancing restrictions amid the coronavirus pandemic.

"I do it (PRP injections) for maintenance purposes," McGlinchey explained, "and the first couple of weeks and all that kind of stuff was what allowed me to be here and train with our staff."

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