Rookie Guard Garnett Was Solid in Debut for 49ers

Former Stanford standout continues to make progress toward earning a starting job for 2016 opener

After one exhibition game, the 49ers’ offensive line is still evolving. Competition is open at both guard spots and right tackle.

But one thing appears certain after San Francisco’s first exhibition game: rookie guard Joshua Garnett appears to be headed toward starting in Game 1.

Garnett has been getting work at both right and left guard in training camp, but seems most likely to beat out Andrew Tiller on the right side with free-agent pickup Zane Beadles earning the left guard job.

Head coach Chip Kelly said Garnett was “solid” in his first game action, an exhibition vs. the Houston Texans Sunday night.

“The things we’ve seen all along you continued to see from him and you continue to see him get better and better as he moves forward,” Kelly told reporters Monday. “I know he’ll build upon that experience.”

Kelly also told Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee that Garnett’s style of play and intelligence have been a great addition to the offensive line.

“He’s a physical player and can create movement at the point of attack,” Kelly said. “I know he’ll build upon that (first-game) experience. He’ll be better this week than he was last week. And that’s what I love about Josh. He’s always growing.”

The 49ers’ next exhibition game is Saturday night in Denver against the Broncos.

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