Without a new deal, CSNBayArea.com reports right guard Alex Boone is in "no way" showing up to training camp…and potentially the start of the 2014 season. So what are the San Francisco 49ers to do if Boone is true to his word?
It's been well documented that Boone is seeking a new contract despite having two more years left on his current deal. Boone believes that he has outplayed the contract and feels that he deserves to be paid accordingly. The 49ers look to have more pressing issues with more highly touted players like Mike Iupati and Michael Crabtree entering their walk years.
At first glance, Tenth-year pro Adam Snyder would be the most likely candidate to plug into Boone's spot. Snyder played in all 16 regular season games last year, filling in wherever he was needed and even started four games. However, inconsistencies caused the veteran out of Oregon to lose his starting gig in the first place. While still a valuable asset to have due to his experience and versatility along the offensive line, depending on him on a every down basis may not be in San Francisco's best interest.
ESPN's Bill Williamson suggested that guard Joe Looney step into the starting role in Boone's absence for now. Entering his third year of professional ball out of Wake Forrest, Looney has shown promise but has little game experience. Looney has only appeared in four games, while being a part of just 72 total snaps over the past two seasons.
Daniel Kilgore also has experience at guard; yet, the 26-year old out of Appalachian State has never started a game over his three year career and is already vying for a chance to start at center against rookie third-round draft pick from USC, Marcus Martin.
And if the Niners are simply looking for competition to drive whomever may start the season at guard, former Stanford offensive lineman (most recently of the Miami Dolphins) Jonathan Martin, expressed that he would welcome a position change if it could help the team. Martin, who was in the middle of a very odd situation that grabbed league headlines involving former teammate Richie Incognito, has never played guard and had spent his two seasons in the league as a starting tackle with the Dolphins.
With neither the 49ers nor Boone showing any sign of backing down over the threat of an extended holdout, SF must make a decision if plan B (whatever that actually is) will be good enough come week 1.
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