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 San Francisco 49ers Draft Review


Team Needs:  QB WR OG LB






Selections:


Rd 1. 7 DeForest Buckner DE Oregon

Rd 1. 28 Joshua Garnett OG Stanford

Rd 3 68 Will Redmond CB Mississippi State

Rd 4. 133 Rashard Robinson CB  LSU

Rd 5. 142 Ronald Blair DE Appalachain State

Rd 5. 145 John Theus OT Georgia

Rd 5. 174 Fahn Cooper OT Mississippi

Rd 6. 207 Jeff Driskel QB Louisiana Tech

Rd 6. 211 Kelvin Taylor RB Florida

Rd 6. 213 Aaron Burbridge WR Michigan State

Rd 7. 213 Prince Charles Iworah Western Kentucky

Recap:

The 49ers, having quickly admitted their mistake in hiring Jim Tomsula, turn to Chip Kelly to turn the team around. Unfortunately for San Francisco they have a roster that has gone from one of the league’s deepest to one of the league’s worst. The team has gaping holes at positions all across the offense and little defensive depth. As always the 49ers had a lot of selections and they couldn’t have used the #7 overall pick any better than by drafting DeForest Buckner. Buckner is the most complete defensive lineman in this year’s class and has the potential to start, and succeed, immediately. Even though the position was not a great need for the team in 2016, Buckner was one of the best selections in the first round. San Francisco surprised many pundits by trading back into the first round to select Joshua Garnett. The Stanford guard is not one of the best 30 players on the board but the team had done their due diligence on him, felt he was the only player that fit their offensive guard position, and got a pretty great deal in trading up. Will Blackmon was not really a shock to scouts as his game film has been very solid throughout his career. If not for an injury in 2015 he likely would have been a top 50 pick. Rashard Robinson was a bit of a surprise in the 4th round because of his lack of college experience. Robinson is a very talented player with a high upside should he be able to stay healthy and out of trouble though. Ronald Blair was another amazing value pick by Trent Baalke. Blair has very clean tape and always plays with heart. He’ll need to adjust to the greater competition but hs won’t be expected to start much as a rookie. John Theus was a nice value at 113. Theus could fill in quickly if needed at either tackle spot, although he will need some time to develop if he is going to play left tackle full time - a position he is ultimately better suited for. Fahn Cooper is another nice developmental tackle with SEC roots that will all but close the door on an Anthony Davis return. Jeff Driskel has the talent to develop and is a very good fit for Chip Kelly’s offense. Kelvin Taylor will likely have a hard time making this roster. Aaron Burbridge is a productive, if physically limited receiver. He could stick around if he shows well on special teams. Prince Charles Iworah looks like a lock for the practice squad, although he does have very good physical tools to work with.

Analysis:

  1. The 49ers used their multiple selections well, insuring that they got the guard they wanted by trading up for him. While this team has not been good for several years they lack quality more than quantity at this point so spending a 4th round pick to get the guy you really want is easily justifiable.

  2. Apparently the 49ers are looking to upgrade the competition at cornerback. With three second year corners and veteran Tramaine Brock on the roster, the 49ers felt the need to add three more corners this year.  Between injuries and experience I wouldn’t expect more than 1 of these three rookies to make the opening day roster but cornerback will be a fun position to watch for the team during training camp.

  3. It seems like the 49ers figure that the addition of Chip Kelly will be enough to improve their terrible offense. They better be right because outside of Torrey Smith and Carlos Hyde they don’t have any skill position players that can be counted on.

Grade: B


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