Predicting the San Francisco 49ers’ 2014 Starters

Predicting the San Francisco 49ers' Starters of 2014

San Francisco 49ers helmet
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The San Francisco 49ers are arguably one of the best teams in the NFL, and going into 2014, the team looks to be legitimate Super Bowl contenders. With one of the best starting lineups in the NFL, the 49ers could finally take the next step in 2014. That said, ladies and gentlemen, here is a prediction of what the 49ers' starting lineup will look like come next season.

QB: Colin Kaepernick

QB Colin Kaepernick
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QB: Colin Kaepernick

QB Colin Kaepernick
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Since becoming the 49ers’ starting quarterback, Colin Kaepernick has cemented himself as one of the NFL’s best young quarterbacks. Kaepernick has great dual-threat ability, and as long as Kaepernick is the starter in San Francisco, the team should be legitimate Super Bowl contenders.

FB: Bruce Miller

FB Bruce Miller
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FB: Bruce Miller

FB Bruce Miller
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One of the better fullbacks in the league, Bruce Miller is the clear-cut starting fullback in San Francisco. Miller is a solid run-blocker and an above-average pass-catcher, and he will have another good year in 2014.

RB: Frank Gore

RB: Frank Gore
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RB: Frank Gore

RB Frank Gore
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He might be getting up there in age, however, Frank Gore is still more than adequate as a starter. Expect Gore to be the 49ers’ starter in 2014, with Carlos Hyde and Marcus Lattimore sprinkled in too.

WR: Michael Crabtree and Anquan Boldin

WR: Michael Crabtree and Anquan Boldin
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WR: Michael Crabtree and Anquan Boldin

WR Michael Crabtree and Anquan Boldin
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Michael Crabtree really broke out in 2013, becoming Kaepernick’s favorite weapon down the stretch. As for Anquan Boldin, the veteran provides the 49ers with an experienced, reliable weapon and he should be a lock to start in 2014.

TE: Vernon Davis

TE: Vernon Davis
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TE: Vernon Davis

TE Vernon Davis
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Among the most physically-gifted tight ends in the NFL, Vernon Davis is a dangerous weapon in San Francisco’s offense. Davis excels as a receiver, and while he’s not a great blocker, Davis should make a big impact in 2014.

OT: Joe Staley (LT) and Anthony Davis (RT)

OT: Joe Staley (LT) and Anthony Davis (RT)
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OT: Joe Staley (LT) and Anthony Davis (RT)

OT Joe Staley and Anthony Davis
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The combination of Joe Staley and Anthony Davis on the 49ers’ offensive line is perhaps the best combination of offensive tackles in the league. Both Staley and Davis are Pro Bowl-level starters, and they are both guaranteed to start next season in San Francisco.

OG: Mike Iupati (LG) and Alex Boone (RG)

OG: Mike Iupati (LG) and Alex Boone (RG)
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OG: Mike Iupati (LG) and Alex Boone (RG)

OG Mike Iupati and Daniel Boone
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Another pair of stars on San Francisco’s offensive line, Mike Iupati and Alex Boone are both upper-echelon starters at their positions. Iupati in particular has been a great starter since he entered the league in 2010, and I fully expect him to continue his development in 2014. As for Boone, like Iupati, he’s a solid starter and a lock to start.

C: Marcus Martin

C: Marcus Martin
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C: Marcus Martin

C Marcus Martin
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The consensus best center in the 2014 NFL Draft, Marcus Martin should be an immediate starter for San Francisco. Martin is adept in both the run and pass games, and I fully expect him to start both in 2014 and well into the future.

DE: Ray McDonald (LE) and Justin Smith (RE)

DE: Ray McDonald (LE) and Justin Smith (RE)
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DE: Ray McDonald (LE) and Justin Smith (RE)

DE Ray McDonald and Justin Smith
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Two very different players who fill two very different roles, Ray McDonald and Justin Smith should be starters again for the 49ers in 2014. Expect McDonald to remain a solid run-stuffer, while Smith should continue his pass-rushing ways next season.

NT: Glenn Dorsey

NT: Glenn Dorsey
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NT: Glenn Dorsey

NT Glenn Dorsey
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A pleasant surprise last season after coming over from the Kansas City Chiefs, Glenn Dorsey earned himself a starting spot for the 49ers in 2014. Dorsey isn’t much of a pass rusher, however, he is a great run-stuffer, and is a solid nose tackle for the team.

OLB: Ahmad Brooks (LOLB) and Aldon Smith (ROLB)

OLB: Ahmad Brooks (LOLB) and Aldon Smith (ROLB)
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OLB: Ahmad Brooks (LOLB) and Aldon Smith (ROLB)

OLB Ahmad Brooks and Aldon Smith
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Ahmad Brooks isn’t a special player by any mean, however, he fits exactly what the 49ers are trying to do on defense, and he will be a starter in 2014. As for Aldon Smith, the young pass rusher could face league discipline due to off-the -field incidents; however, when he’s on the field, he’s one of the NFL’s premier pass-rushing linebackers. If he’s available, Smith is guaranteed to start.

ILB: Patrick Willis and Chris Borland

ILB: Patrick Willis and Chris Borland
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ILB: Patrick Willis and Chris Borland

ILB Patrick Willis and Chris Borland
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Although Patrick Willis might just be the best inside linebacker in the entire NFL, the absence of Navorro Bowman could end up really hurting the 49ers’ defense. Chris Borland has the talent to be an effective starter, however, and I fully expect him to be at least adequate until Bowman is able to return.

CB: Chris Culliver and Tramaine Brock

CB: Chris Culliver and Tramaine Brock
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CB: Chris Culliver and Tramaine Brock

CB Chris Culliver and Tramaine Brock
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Perhaps the weakest point of the defense for the 49ers is the cornerback position. Chris Culliver and Tramaine Brock are decent enough players; however, they aren’t the type of players who should be playing a very significant amount of snaps. Don’t be surprised if a move is made to help out at the position.

FS: Eric Reid

FS: Eric Reid
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FS: Eric Reid

FS Eric Reid
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In the 2013 NFL Draft, the 49ers traded up in the first round to secure Eric Reid, and one year later, it looks like a great move. Reid could become a star in 2014, and I fully expect him to be a stalwart for the 49ers for years to come.

SS: Jimmie Ward

SS: Jimmie Ward
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SS: Jimmie Ward

SS Jimmie Ward
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A first-round selection this year, Jimmie Ward was widely considered to be the best strong safety available in this year’s draft, and is a good bet to beat out free-agent signing Antoine Bethea. Ward and Reid would give the 49ers a pair of future elite players in the secondary.

Special Teams

Special Teams
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Special Teams

Special Teams
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San Francisco’s special teams should remain as solid as ever in 2014, as Phil Dawson returns as kicker, while Andy Lee will return as team’s punter. Also, look for Kevin McDermott to handle long-snapping duties, while LaMichael James will handle returns.


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