Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports


2018 NFL Draft: 49ers make a smart, forward-thinking selection in Notre Dame’s Mike McGlinchey

Al Sacco
Apr 27, 2018 at 7:41 AM0


The San Francisco 49ers made a somewhat surprising selection in the first-round of 2018 NFL Draft, taking Notre Dame tackle Mike McGlinchey ninth overall. The reason the pick caught some off guard was that the Niners seemed to have more pressing needs elsewhere (specifically on the defensive side of the ball) and there were still impact players on the board that would have alleviated those issues on the roster. If you look a little deeper though, you'd see that San Francisco made a forward-thinking move that filled a hole before it became a major problem.

The real buzz surrounding McGlinchey started earlier in the week when Peter King of Sports Illustrated wrote that the 49ers were giving serious consideration to the offensive lineman. As the days went on, the whispers started to get a little louder, and people I spoke to throughout the week confirmed that McGlinchey was indeed a name to keep an eye on come draft night. But why would John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan want a tackle when they already have two good ones on the roster? The explanation is simple.

LT Joe Staley is coming off a strong 2017 campaign, but he'll be 34-years old when the new season starts. As good as Staley is, Father Time will catch up with him sooner or later, and it's hard to imagine the veteran playing past 2019 (which is when his current contract expires). Looking over at the right side, Trent Brown is a talented pass blocker and excelled in that department last year. But let's be honest, he has red flags, and there was zero chance of the 49ers paying him when his deal expires after this upcoming season. The issues with Brown seem to stem from his conditioning (he reportedly showed up to the team's offseason program out of shape) and his struggles in the run game. Combine that with the fact that he's still recovering from shoulder surgery, and you had a player who would have been moving on sooner rather than later.

So with Staley aging and Brown not a part of the plans moving forward, getting a legitimate offensive tackle should have been a priority. Now, McGlinchey will plug into the starting lineup opposite Staley, with the hopes that he can become the primary left tackle in a year or two. It's a smart move, and shows a commitment to protecting the team's most important investment, QB Jimmy Garoppolo. McGlinchey will join C Weston Richburg as centerpieces of an offensive line that will be tasked with keeping Garoppolo upright for the next five-plus years. Is there anything more important than keeping your franchise quarterback healthy?

As far as McGlinchey the player, it's easy to see why Shanahan coveted him. McGlinchey is smart, athletic, and fits the mold of what the coach is looking for in an offensive lineman. His size (6'7, 309 lbs) and arm length (34 inches) are ideal, although detractors will say he needs to add more strength. Even if the latter is an issue, you'd have to think an NFL strength and conditioning program could fix the problem.

A final note that can't be understated in all of this is the impact the newest 49er could have in the locker room. A two-time captain at Notre Dame, McGlinchey should evolve to be one of the leaders of a young team that's still growing into itself. That's especially important with Staley in the twilight of his career.

Al Sacco is the Senior Writer for 49ers Webzone and has had his work used by national outlets such as ESPN and USA TODAY. In addition to his writing duties, Al is also the co-host of the No Huddle podcast. If you'd like to reach Al with a media request, please contact him via Twitter @AlSacco49 or at [email protected].
The views within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


0 Comments

  • No Comments

Facebook Comments



More San Francisco 49ers News



49ers eager to get back to work after loss to Cardinals, says Mike McGlinchey

By David Bonilla
Sep 16, 2020

The San Francisco 49ers entered the offseason motivated by February's Super Bowl defeat. Maybe that wasn't enough because the team gained some extra motivation the hard way on Sunday after the Arizona Cardinals pulled off the upset 24-20 win at Levi's Stadium. The loss forces San Francisco to play catchup with the rest of the division. It is the only NFC West squad that suffered a defeat during Week 1. The 49ers are back to work this week and beginning preparations for their two-game road trip to the East Coast, where they will face the New York Jets and New York Giants at MetLife Stadium in back-to-back weekends. The team's focus remains on the opponent

Read the Full Article


Robert Saleh, Nick Bosa look forward to the challenge of stopping 49ers legend Frank Gore on Sunday

By David Bonilla
Sep 17, 2020

Everyone in the NFL has a tremendous amount of respect for Frank Gore. He remains a fan-favorite in the Bay Area, even this week as the San Francisco 49ers prepare to face the New York Jets at MetLife Stadium. Gore is in his 16th NFL season. The future Hall of Fame running back figures to be a significant part of the Jets offense this weekend with Le'Veon Bell on injured reserve. Head coach Adam Gase confirmed this week that the 37-year-old running back would start against the 49ers — the team that drafted Gore in 2005. Second-year defensive end Nick Bosa was seven years old when Gore took his first NFL snap. His defense will try to stop the veteran running back on Sunday. Bosa, now 22, was asked about Gore after Thursday's practice and whether

Read the Full Article


49ers TE Jordan Reed steps up with his biggest performance since 2018 in George Kittle's absence

By Kirk Larrabee
Sep 20, 2020

With All-Pro tight end George Kittle sidelined with a knee issue and a number of wide receivers dealing with injuries of their own, the 49ers needed someone to step up and carry the weight in the pass-catching department against the New York Jets on Sunday. Needless to say, veteran tight end Jordan Reed answered the call in a big way. Given his extensive injury history, it was hard to know what to expect from Reed after he signed with the 49ers in August. Reed missed the entire 2019 season after sustaining the seventh known concussion of his career and was limited to 65 total games over his first seven NFL seasons. But after being brought along slowly during training camp, Reed began to show signs of still being the type of player he was earlier in his career

Read the Full Article

Featured

More Featured Stories

More by Al Sacco

All Articles by Al Sacco

More Articles

All Articles
Share 49erswebzone