The San Francisco 49ers have figured out most of their starting lineup, but right guard remains a question mark. Head coach Kyle Shanahan told the media on Tuesday that the job is Mike Person’s to lose, but he said Joshua Garnett still could win it. Shanahan felt that Person has been the most consistent thus far.
Shanahan said Garnett will play on Thursday against the Los Angeles Chargers, but he had not yet decided if Person would play. If Person does not play, that would seem to suggest they know what they need to know about him, and then it’s just if Garnett can string together another strong performance.
I am curious what will happen with Jonathan Cooper this Thursday and beyond. My guess is we see him play left guard against the Chargers while Garnett plays right guard. After that, I don’t know. They could release Cooper during roster cuts before his salary becomes fully guaranteed Week 1, and then sign him after that. Shanahan has said multiple times that it’s taken Cooper time to get back into the swing of things. Maybe the team wants his veteran presence. Or, maybe he gets cut and that ends that with Garnett potentially showing he can be the answer. Saturday’s final roster cuts are going to be interesting for the offensive line.
Fooch’s update: Here is Shanahan’s full Q&A about the right guard position.
Where do things stand at right guard with the way that G Joshua Garnett has played these last two weeks?
“Josh definitely helped himself out last week. I’m glad we’ve got another game to watch it. We had a good practice today where we’ll still get to evaluate when we get in there. I look forward to watching him on Thursday.”
As of right now, is OL Mike Person your starting right guard?
“Yeah, I would say it’s his job to lose right now or however you want to say it. Josh could beat him out. But, Person has been the most consistent since day one and he’s had a real good camp. We’ll see what happens these last few days.”
With right guard and other positions that are still up in the air, will you have those guys play in this game, will Person and Garnett?
“Yeah, I haven’t decided on Person. We’ll see how this plays out. I know Garnett for sure will. There’s a lot of positions up for air. Like I say a lot, you know when it’s a starter sometimes, but there’s a lot of guys competing against each other at different positions for special teams spots. It’s not just who is the number one, who is the two? It’s who is going to be up on game day and just how to piece this puzzle together the best we can.”