Niners Should Get Starting Right Guard Back for Playoffs

Mike Person, who missed the past two games with a sore neck, is expected to start in playoff game on January 11

San Francisco 49ers Offensive Guard Mike Person
Cody Glenn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

When the 49ers open the playoffs in two weeks, Mike Person will be back at right guard.

The veteran lineman, 31, started the Niners’ first 14 games, but then sat out the last two with a sore neck, ending a streak of 30 straight games played with the team.

He was replaced by Daniel Brunskill, who helped San Francisco beat the Rams and Seahawks to close out the regular season.

But Person was dressed and could have played if Brunskill had faltered or been injured. Fortunately for Person and the team, that didn’t happen.

Now the No. 1-seeded 49ers, who won the NFC West at 13-3, have some time to heal up before opening the postseason Jan. 11 against a team to be determined after the wild-card round this weekend.

“Mike is good to go,” said head coach Mike Shanahan. “He’s battled through all this stuff. I think these two weeks of him not having to get in these games have helped him a lot. The issues he has aren’t going to go away until after the season when he can take a couple of months off. I think these two weeks have helped him.

“Getting another bye week will help him a ton and we’ll see how practice goes this week and next.”

Brunskill and fellow backup offensive lineman Justin Skule have been invaluable for the 49ers this season, filling in capably for starting tackles Joe Staley and Mike McGlinchey, as well as Person. Also, Ben Garland has graded well at center in recent games in place of starter Weston Richburg, who is out for the playoffs with a torn patellar tendon.

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