Just Sign Lynch
July 26 2002
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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The injured Jeremy Newberry continues to walk around in his air boot. Newberry, the 49ers only official center on the team is taking time to recover completely from his injury. Steve Mariucci stated that if the 49ers had a game this Sunday that he would be playing - but given the lack of depth at the position, and the missed snaps and fumbles that have come while Newberry has stepped off the field - one really has to wonder why the 49ers donít bring back the veteran Ben Lynch.
The 49ers have been working through other players at the center positions. Dave Fiore is the immediate backup, Eric Heitmann (a true guard) and Jeff McCurley (a true center) snapping the balls. The team has also been working Ty Wise at the position, but Wise would need a miracle to make the 49ers roster. All this aggravation when the answer is so simple. Re-sign Lynch.
The 49ers rescinded their qualifying offer earlier this year to Lynch. It was after all a luxury to carry two true centers on the team (normally the back up center is versatile enough to play other positions), but Lynch did an amazing job in Newberryís absence, he is still available, the 49ers would have to re-shuffle their entire line if Newberry were to miss a regular season game (given that their backup center is also a starter on the line), why not afford themselves the luxury.
Last season the 49ers did not carry a full roster because of the salary cap, this season, they have the room to carry a luxury player or two under the cap. Lynch would only cost the team $450 000, the veteran minimum salary - and heís stated he wants to remain a 49er, and that he has allegiance to the 49ers. There is no need to even consider this move, itís as simple as 1+1=2 and itís about time the 49ers make it.
Further - Defensive lineman John Schlecht will be unable to fly over to Japan for the 49ers game. His back injury will prevent him from making the 11 hour flight.