UPDATED WITH A LOOK AT PANTHERS DIFFICULT 2009 SCHEDULE.
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The 49ers traded their pick in the second round – and their pick in the fourth round – to the Panthers for a first-round selection in 2010.
Here’s the reasoning from GM Scot McCloughan:
“We had two players pinpointed in the five picks ahead of us, and both were taken. We did not see a player of the value at that pick for us.
“I just don’t want to sit there and say, ‘Well, geez, it’s our pick, we’re going to take a player if we don’t think the value of the player is there.’ As everybody is well aware, ones are huge, especially if we want to do anything with that pick any time here out to next year. Of course, we’re going into next draft with two No. 1 picks.”
First off, here were the five players that went before the No. 43 pick: LB Rey Maualuga (pretty sure he was one the 49ers would’ve taken), OT Eben Britton (probably not), NT Ron Brace, CB Darius Butler (might be the other) and CB Jairus Byrd.
I’m sure a lot of people are questioning the wisdom of this trade, especially after fan favorite Everette Brown was scooped up with the Panthers’ newly acquired pick at No. 43. Also, the 49ers saw their number of picks this year shrink from nine to seven.
And the 49ers still need a running back and outside pass rusher. They could use help at safety, cornerback and offensive tackle.
But, clearly, McCloughan is not enamored of the talent in this draft. “I think the depth of this draft isn’t as good as it’s been in the past,” he said.
Next year, one would think the draft will be better. And while the 49ers still might take a quarterback to develop on Sunday, let’s think about the future. What happens if it becomes apparent that neither Shaun Hill nor Alex Smith is long-term answer?
The 49ers are perfectly situated to get a quarterback in next year’s draft. The likes of Colt McCoy and Sam Bradford might be considered franchise-type quarterbacks a year from now. Heck, if Tim Tebow is able to answer some questions about his passing ability, he might enter that discussion, too.
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Obviously, the worse the Panthers fare in 2009, the better for the 49ers, who now own their first-round selection in 2010.
The Panthers finished last season with a 12-4 record. They owned the No. 27 overall pick this year. Taking a look at their schedule for 2009, and it’s hard to believe the Panthers will approach that record this season.
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