The San Francisco 49ers offensive line has much work to do, but one of the main things, consistency, has been addressed. The line showed signs of solid improvement in 2018 despite center Weston Richburg fighting an injury and many wondering if Mike Person was the answer at guard.
This was one of the worst offensive lines in the league two years ago.
The 49ers offensive line isn’t perfect. They can still address the guard or center positions, but they at least have competent players there.
With the new contract given to Joe Staley, this keeps the 2018 offensive line together for at least three more years. Things can change as time goes on; they could have a guard prospect beat someone out for a job or have a regression that leads to burning a high draft pick in the 2020 NFL draft, but they also have a chance to gel and improve upon their 2018 campaign.
Finishing 2017, the 49ers were right in the middle of Pro Football Focus’ offensive line rankings. Weston Richburg may have been the lowest rated, giving up the third-most pressures among centers.
All that said, the 49ers may be wise to not drag their feet on getting replacements ready in three years. That time can pass quick.
2021 will be an interesting year for the offensive line. Staley’s contract will conclude following that season as will Laken Tomlinson and Mike Person’s deal. There is no urgency to get replacements now, but 2020 might mean the 49ers start looking at development pieces.