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Joshua Garnett was inactive for his first NFL game

garnett-copy Getty Images

Monday night’s game between the Rams and 49ers featured a first overall pick in street clothes. Another first-rounder also didn’t dress for the contest.

49ers guard Joshua Garnett, whom the team traded back into round one to acquire, was one of the inactive players for his NFL debut.

“Josh is extremely close and is as close to playing as he is to being inactive just because we’re dressing seven,” coach Chip Kelly told reporters on Monday. “The difference between Josh Garnett and Marcus Martin right now is that Marcus Martin can play center and guard where Josh has just been exclusively trained at guard, just because he just got here. So our emergency center after Marcus was [Zane] Beadles. Beadles has taken minimum snaps there, just like our emergency quarterback is [tight end] Blake Bell. If we’re down to our third center or our third quarterback, we’re going to be drastically different just from a practice standpoint. You don’t get a lot of reps for all those guys. But, Josh is a lot closer. I think people see, ‘Well, he was inactive.’ But he’s pushing to be a starter. The issue is we can’t dress him because when we dress seven, he doesn’t have the center background to be able to go in there and be the center. So it’s just one of those deals where the numbers, when you’re only dressing 46 on game day then you’ve really got to kind of cut someone and that’s really the decision we made going into this game. That doesn’t mean later on down the road that that’s not going to change.”

Regardless, whenever a first-round pick doesn’t dress in his first game for reasons other than injury, the situation invites questions regarding whether the team made the right move, especially when the team moved up. It’s still a long season and Garnett has four total seasons to fulfill his potential. While the situation is noteworthy, it’s too early for the 49ers to panic.

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10 Responses to “Joshua Garnett was inactive for his first NFL game”
  1. braceyourselffor12 says: Sep 13, 2016 7:16 PM

    So guys who weren’t prohibited from participating in OTAs and training camp due to college restrictions are ahead of a rookie on the depth chart? That’s incredible.

  2. jshawaii22 says: Sep 13, 2016 7:27 PM

    Now that was classic ‘Coach Speak’… he ought to get the Coach B award for speaking without saying anything prize.

  3. southpaw79 says: Sep 13, 2016 7:29 PM

    Why Panic? Old Chipper’s response was actually easy to understand and made perfect sense. Besides a few rookie mistakes Garnett looked good in the preseason.

  4. thegreatgabbert says: Sep 13, 2016 7:31 PM

    Considerable difference between adding a fourth round pick to move up into the late first round than trading away all your premium picks to 2020 for the first overall pick, though. I have a lot more confidence in Josh Garnett who is stuck behind a suddenly very deep 49er O line than Goff who is stuck behind a couple players who look like they’d be challenged to start in the CFL.

  5. decon49 says: Sep 13, 2016 7:41 PM

    So they explain why he didn’t dress and you still make assumptions about him being a bust…after week one?

  6. i thumbs down your comment says: Sep 13, 2016 7:46 PM

    Also noteworthy is that the Anthony Davis situation was a huge question mark prior to the Draft.

    49ers OL looked good against “the best front 7 in football”

  7. andreboy1 says: Sep 13, 2016 7:54 PM

    What a difference a year makes

    Last year we probably had the least talented o-line in all the game, with no depth on top of that

    Now we go two deep at all positions

    Josh will be fine, AD could quit again and he could easily beat out Beadles or Tiller in the near future

  8. osiris33 (bandwagon since 1976) says: Sep 13, 2016 8:51 PM


  9. oreo51 says: Sep 13, 2016 9:51 PM

    Ifedi was taken after Garnett and he would be starting were it not for his injury. A first round pick ought to start. Garnett is a bust.

  10. LoCoSu@%s says: Sep 13, 2016 10:17 PM

    osiris33 (bandwagon since 1976) says:
    Sep 13, 2016 8:51 PM

    Speak for your own team’s O-Line.
    And pray for Wilson if he plays against the Rams.

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