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49ers had fifth youngest snap-adjusted roster thanks primarily to defense

The 49ers will get older in 2019, but there are critical areas they might get a little younger.

The San Francisco 49ers have undergone a massive roster overhaul in the two seasons John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan have been in charge. It’s not surprising given how bad the team was, but we’re seeing a young roster slowly come together.

Our friends at Blogging The Boys took a deep dive into average roster age on a per-snap basis. We hear regularly about the average age on a team, but it’s more useful to know the average age based on how much players are playing. Robbie Gould is the 49ers oldest player at 36, but he also only plays on special teams. Meanwhile, Nick Mullens is 23 and spent the second half of the season starting at quarterback. While Gould was plenty important to the roster, the average should skew based on who is playing more snaps.

BTB was excited to see that their Cowboys ranked as the youngest roster on a per-snap basis. Meanwhile, the 49ers are ranked fifth in per-snap age. BTB broke it down into offense, defense, and special teams. The 49ers are 15th youngest on offense, third youngest on defense, and third youngest on special teams.

The 49ers will get likely get older across the board barring a drastic change in the roster. On offense, if Jimmy Garoppolo is healthy, he is four years older than Nick Mullens. Matt Breida was 23 this past season, and Jerick McKinnon is three years older. At the same time, if the team releases Pierre Garçon, we could see some younger talent getting more of an opportunity. And Mike Person’s status at right guard will be something to watch.

On defense, things will get interesting with players like Tarvarius Moore, D.J. Reed, and Marcell Harris all getting more snaps in 2019. And of course, the 49ers first round pick is hopefully going to be playing plenty of snaps as well, so that will bring down the per-snap age on defensive side of the ball that much more.