Akash raised brought up a good question that will create a fun discussion Monday morning. Now that Joe Staley has retired, and DeForest Buckner has been traded, who will replace the San Francisco 49ers team captains from last year? He believes the answer is Fred Warner and Mike McGlinchey. You can make a strong argument for a handful of players on the roster. Warner feels like a lock after the season he just had. Fred developed leadership skills and became more vocal, and that turned into confidence and playmaking on the field. That’s one, who is the other option? Let’s go through a few options.
McGlinchey seems like an easy choice being a tackle and Staley’s buddy. Does Mike have similar respect in the 49ers locker room and leadership qualities? We’ll find out how McGlinchey grows as a player this year.
Alexander was the 49ers’ heartbeat last year. Yes, he missed significant time with injury, but Warner isn’t Warner without Kwon’s presence. Alexander’s personality brought out the best in Fred, and we saw Alexander in the middle of the team huddle, giving speeches and breaking the team down. Alexander’s biggest issue with being voted a captain? Warner.
If there is a newcomer that can walk into the Niners locker room and become a captain, it’s Trent Williams. He’s an established veteran with a strong personality. Most importantly, Williams is going to be one of the best players on an already loaded roster. Williams says he’s healthy.
I wouldn’t be surprised if both of the new captains are on defense. Armstead broke out in 2019, and it’d make sense if he replaced his college teammate as a captain. Arik’s contract may play a part in that, but it’s also easy to appreciate what Armstead does in the community as well.
Ford is my sleeper pick for captain. To a man, including Buckner, each defensive lineman that started told me during the Super Bowl week that Ford was the leader of the group, and he helped everyone out the most. If Ford is healthy all camp and can earn that same trust from the rest of his teammates, that’s my pick. I’m going with Ford and Warner.
Who do you think? Is it too early still for Nick Bosa and Deebo Samuel? Will a surprise player step up, like Jimmie Ward or Weston Richburg? There are plenty of options.