The 49ers’ No. 1 draft pick, Mike McGlinchey, is having a nice rookie season.
The starting right tackle from Notre Dame continues to improve – even as the team struggles – and appears to be a strong building block for the future.
Going into this past weekend’s game at Seattle, McGlinchey was graded by the analytic website Pro Football Focus as the No. 1 offensive lineman among rookies in the NFL this season. McGlinchey received a grade of 76.0, ahead of Quenton Nelson (72.1), Braden Smith (70.0), James Daniels (67.1) and Will Hernandez (66.1)
Wrote Patrick Holloway of SB Nation: “McGlinchey has been a great run-blocker and decent in pass protection, and it’s his rookie season for crying out loud. Yes, his pass protection isn’t near the level of his run blocking, but that grade is overall, not just run-blocking.”
Earlier this season, McGlinchey showed the impact he can make, by opening up a hole for running back Raheem Mostert, who scored on a 52-yard run in a win over the Raiders. McGlinchey even got downfield to help escort Mostert downfield.
“That’s what’s kind of fun about Kyle’s offense,” McGlinchey told a reporter, of playing in head coach Kyle Shanahan’s scheme. “You get to show off your athletic ability a little bit with how we run, and how we try and get in front of guys. Those are my favorite plays because it allows us to do something different than just run downhill and block a defensive lineman. It’s a lot of fun doing stuff like that. Great play call and awesome execution of the play.”
Though the 49ers coaching staff knows he still needs to work to get better, Shanahan has been pleased with what McGlinchey has shown this season. Shanahan said he loves the way McGlinchey takes his man out of plays. With left tackle Joe Staley playing at a high level, the 49ers have a good pair of tackles heading into 2019.
“McGlinchey is a very consistent football player,’ Shanahan said recently. “He did it every single game he was in college and he’s done that for us here. He’s got the skill set to do it. What separates those guys when they do have the skill set is the mindset, how tough they are, how detailed they can be, how consistent they can be throughout a game and that’s what we liked about him most.”
The 2-10 49ers will play host to the 6-6 Denver Broncos Sunday. Kickoff is set for 1:05 p.m.