Here at Niners Nation, we're presenting a series called "90-in-90". We'll be looking at every player on the San Francisco 49ers offseason roster, one player per post, from now until the start of training camp.
One of my favorite players is Alex Boone. If you've been here long, you know I've done a couple of articles on how well he held up when called upon back in the days when he was just a reserve lineman. There was a particular game against Arizona, I believe, where he played most of the contest at left tackle and essentially had a near flawless game. I long felt that he could be a legitimate LT in the NFL, but hey, I'll take a great right guard out of him, too.
When I say "great", I'm not just speaking out of homeristic love, either. Pro Football Focus has Boone rated as their third-best guard in the NFL for the 2012 regular season and even went so far as to name him the 49ers' "Secret Superstar".
I'm also pretty sure that one of the country's best zoos doesn't just go around naming Rhinoceroses after crappy players, but I didn't fact-check that.
Boone is a large man, very tall at 6'7", especially for a guard in the NFL. Many wondered if he could adequately play the position, which requires staying low and using power against large defensive linemen. Boone was considered to be more of an agile guy, suited to play on the edge, but he's made the transition about as well as anyone could have possibly imagined, giving up just four sacks and doing an excellent job in the run game.
Chances he improves in 2013
I think the odds are high here. As Boone learns more of the intricacies of the position and further gels with his line-mates, he should show steady improvement. He's the right combination of smart and nasty, and with big Anthony Davis by his side, I can see them clearing the way for 49ers running backs for years to come.
Chances he regresses in 2013
I suppose it's possible that D-linemen will figure out some of Boone's tricks and try to attack them now that there is some tape on the guy. He'll have to work hard to keep thwarting their efforts as time goes on. I think he's in the right situation though and I can't see him really going backwards.
Odds of making the roster
I'm not going to even dignify this with a response ... well, other than what I just wrote.