49ers pick Reuben Foster after trading up. Grade?

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SANTA CLARA

From the perspective of on-field achievements, you can’t argue with this pick.

Reuben Foster may be the next Patrick Willis. And the 49ers got Foster at the end of Round 1. Traded pick Nos. 34 and 111 to the Seattle Seahawks to take him with pick No. 31.

Experts considered Foster a top-five pick just last week. But on April 20, Foster told the NFL Network he failed a substance-abuse drug test at the Scouting Combine. That’s why he fell so far down the draft board.

Foster comes to the 49ers with one strike against him. From now on, he will take frequent random drug tests and, if he fails a second one, the NFL will suspend him for at least four games.

Now, the Niners have two key players in the league’s drug testing protocol — Foster and Aaron Lynch, who failed a drug test last year and seems to lack self control. Does Foster lack self control, too? We will find out. These two may need shrinks and therapy.

This is a risky pick.

Grade: B.

This article has 209 Comments

      1. Sure, you can give Foster’s selection an A if only evaluating his on-the-field performance and expectations for him as a player; however, there is the flip side to the coin. The Niners probably thought the same about Aldon Smith, Aaron Lynch and others who have been suspended or traded or even cut because of their off-the-field issues.

        In this current NFL’s society and culture, often the off-the-field elements surpass the on-the-field talents. Jerry Jones of the Cowboys last year thought he and his team could control Randy Gregory and his issues, so they drafted him. Look at how that has turned out. The Cowboys had to draft Taco last night for the pass rusher Gregory should have been in year 2 except now Gregory is on ice for the season and in the system.

        Can’t look at a player through polaroid vision and rose tinted glasses. Have to have panavision and see the big picture. When they have a strike against them coming out of college, the odds are in favor of them having another one sometime down the road. Look at the stats.

          1. Valid points. Don’t forget there are players who don’t come into the league with any strikes against them but start collecting character issues and failed drug tests after the fact.

            The facts are any player, no matter how squeaky clean they seem before the draft, could wind up with character issues or drug offenses after they’ve been picked.

            Your can take the perfectly clean player with less talent and they can turn into a problem child and you can draft the more talented player with 1 strike and they never make that mistake again. It swings both ways.

  1. I’ve had Foster as #2 on my big board. Excellent run defender. Solid in coverage. Ferocious hitter. I’m more excited about Foster than I am about Thomas.

    1. Foster is absolutely a fearsome football player. Heart, courage, and talent are off the charts. At pick #31 it was a no-brainer to move up to take him. Lynch deserves credit for the move. What scares me about Foster is the off the field stuff and his actual size. Foster checked in at the combine at 6’0 and only 228 lbs. He also ran a 4.72 which is average at best. Patrick Willis was every bit of 6’1″ and 240 Lbs AND he ran a 4.5. Willis had great size for an ILB but Foster is on the smaller side. If the shoulders are a chronic problem for a smaller LB then Foster could have a very short career. BUT Lynch and Shanny have my full support & trust until they prove they don’t deserve it so I say Grade A moves in the 1st round.

  2. Grade A+ got 2 top 5 tallents both that we wanted. The draft became an A as soon as the Bears overpaid us and we still got who we were going to draft anyway. I think became an A+ when Foster dropped. There is risk, but it’s worth it. Cosell had us drafting Foster at # 2. The defense just got much better.

  3. Russian Roulette Pick. If he has behavioral issues and suspensions, its the same pick AJ Jenkins was taken. If he’s clean, its a grand slam.

    1. Hedging their best. Get the “safe” pick in Thomas. Take a no risk-it, no-biscuit player in Foster. And if he works out, that’s one buh-dass biscuit.

    2. Good observation. Only difference is that it is really a 2nd rounder bought cheaply with a small trade down. ;)

  4. Niners nailed this first round. They drafted two players who were rated in the top 5-10 and got an extra two 3rd round picks on top of it.
    Fosters shoulder concerns me more than his diluted drug test.
    Both players are high energy,tough players. The run defense and the pass defense have been improved in one night.
    Lynch gets an A for the first day of his first draft.

      1. No he wouldn’t of been. Its been confirmed the Saints were going to pick him up with the very next pick. Even Foster said he thought he was going to be a Saint. Great job by the new GM and staff being 2 steps ahead of everybody.

    1. When you consider that Bowman and Armstead will be healthy….. and we have Mitchell at NT and 4 more picks in the next 2 rounds…. This could be an exciting defense next year. I’m not so much worried about stopping the run as I am about stopping the pass! With 8 in the box, do we have enough range and talent on the back end? We could wind up stuffing the run but giving up the most passing yardage in the league!

  5. If you told me at the start of the day the 49ers first two picks would be Thomas and Foster, and in the process they would add two third round picks, I would have had a good laugh.

    Foster is risky, but he’s clearly a player the 49ers liked a lot throughout the process. They needed an upgrade at LB and got a good one. Hard to argue against it really.

    1. I’m really happy. They sent Keena Turner and “Reverend Earl” to Alabama to vet him.

      Lynch said tonight if the Bears took Thomas, the 49ers would have drafted Foster at 2. He had Thomas and Foster in the top three players on his board.

    2. My fantasy was to drop back to 3 and get an extra 2nd rounder from the Bears. Then drop to 4 and get either a 3rd rounder this year or a 2nd rounder next year from the Jaguars. Considering that we got Thomas and Foster, an extra 3rd rounder this year and a 3rd rounder next year? And the 3rd rounders we have will be the 2nd and 3rd overall picks? I ain’t complaining! The Bears are whacked and thank God for that! Is Ditka running their draft? Sucks to be Mike Glennon right now!

    3. I concur, risky but he’s obviously a solid player. An upgrade to the LB core right away. Will hopefully learn to stay focused from Bowman and go on to do great things. If Solomon is the character he is touted to be perhaps the two picks together may work.

    4. One can’t rationally argue against these outstanding selections although one an nitpick as usual. Lynch nailed a double AA in his first NFL draft and the 49ers have become significantly better overnight. They need to add a good CB or S and they’re back in the top 12 defenses again. With a plethora of picks remaining and a deeply talented draft, this will only get better. We need a RB, WR and developmental QB, we need some OL help, Lynch and Shanny, rock n roll . . .

      1. These guys are rookies and depth is still very much an issue. I will wait and see how things shake up before I declare this a top defense. Last year we were declaring this a top offense too with the guru CK. Injuries and a year later we have forgotten some of those lofty pronouncements. Let’s wait and see. These guys are good prospects for sure and I really like the first day moves but the season is long.

  6. It’s an A+ based on the original trade for the extra picks alone. Yes there are risks, but this is a top 5 talent acquired at the bottom of the first, so it’s worth it imo.

      1. Shoup—I think that extra year on a rookie salary is worth the trade up to get him in the first. That aspect is something many people seem to forget.

      2. While it seems that many seem to think that is a good thing, I find it interesting that Seattle seems to trade or trade out of their 1st round pick more often than not. In reading some of the FieldGulls comments, there seems to be a consensus that the Seahawks don’t value the extra year.

        Oh, and there is some concern over on that board about how Lynch nailed his first draft !

  7. Your statement is inaccurate Grant. It was the shoulder issues which caused Foster to slide. It was stated several times this past week that teams were not really concerned about the diluted drug test from him or Peppers.

    1. Jonathan Allen has bad shoulders and he was picked 17th. Teams always are concerned about players in the drug-testing program.

          1. Or until the NFL stops testing for marijuana like they should. If anyone should get to smoke a joint at the end of the day its an NFL player. NFL is draconian.

            1. If Jerry Jones gets his way MJ testing in the NFL will go away. Everyone agrees that MJ is not a PED and frankly the NFL ban on it was more for PR purposes than anything else. Now that public opinion on MJ has shifted there really is no reason to ban it or even test for it.
              And that is without mentioning that it seems like 70% of players already smoke it and are able to pass the drug test (Aaron Hernandez never failed a drug test despite smoking “nearly every day”) We usually hear about players getting arrested for other things and MJ being found on their person in the process.
              And finally, Medical MJ is waaaay safer than the opioid alternatives

          2. Grant, didn’t you have Foster in one of your mock drafts going to the 49ers at #2. And now your giving them a B for snatching him up at 31. Are you mad the 49ers front office is smarter than you…? Just give credit where credit is due. Its a much better look for you!

      1. Using Allen as evidence is not advised since you do not know how fall he would have fallen if the Redskins had not selected him.

  8. Double A++ for the Foster pick. Giving up so little to get a top 5 pick is great, but the shoulder issues are something to keep an eye on. With that said, Foster helps upgrade the defense because of his capability against the run and pass. As David Shaw said, “He’s a sideline to sideline thumper.”

      1. Midwest – Oh, that’s right. Take of the trade tape re Jimmy Johnson chart….

        2 = 2,600
        3+67+111+*2018 3rd = 2,727

        *estimated mid round

        1. We have our own trade chart. Walsh had Marathe make one that was more realistic than the ‘pull numbers out of my ***’ chart the Cowboys did one night before the draft.

          1. Really? Do you know where I can find that chart? I’ve never heard of it but I wouldn’t be surprised, given Walsh’s genius.

  9. A+ 1st round. Not sure what the deal is with Foster’s shoulder, but if it turns out to be fine then the Niners just landed an exceptional football player. It could go down as an all time great pick. Kudos to Lynch and Shanny.

  10. Yes, Foster does have concerns. The shoulder needs to heal fully, and his drug testing require constant supporters to help him live clean.

    Still, the Niners leapfrogged over the Saints to were reported to want Foster, and it only cost a 4th round pick to move up.

    Foster is a huge upgrade from Bellore, and Lynch got a player from the SEC.

    There can be no other grade than an A, unless it is an A+. One moth ago, he was talented enough to go top 10. Sure, he went 31, but he still is a top 10 talent.

  11. So now that Lynch has shown he loves a trade as much as Baalke, do we need reevaluate who the mind behind these trades really is? Maybe draft ninja Baalke was actually draft ninja Paraag all along?

    1. I don’t know Scooter. Baalke usually wanted to have control over every little aspect, while Lynch is apparently known for delegating tasks.

      1. I dont know…. Delegate is a pretty extreme term. I think I would describe it more as he takes others opinions into consideration. A trait I like in a GM

        1. mcniner- That is a trait that is essential for any GM and the main reason Baalke was a disaster waiting to happen.

  12. the TV analysts were saying that it wasn’t the diluted urine drug test that scared teams away. it was his injured shoulders…that he was a medical risk to take earlier in the 1st round. Let’s hope Lynch has a better time evaluating injury risk players than Baalke.

    1. That was my pre-draft view that it would be the shoulders not the minor mistakes that will drop Foster’s stock. Had forgotten to add the automatic Bama downgrade :) Anyway, I had figured he could drop as low as the late 30s but an happy that I was wrong.

  13. http://www.49erswebzone.com/articles/105537-transcript-reuben-foster-conference-call-media/

    What is it about Patrick Willis as a player that you admire?

    “His passion about the sport. His aggressiveness. His leadership role. He’s got the passion for the sport that I want to be. Like, I want to have that passion up there for the 49ers. Like, I want to be that next Patrick Willis, where people are saying being that next Reuben Foster.”

    What’s the status of the shoulder?

    “It’s 90-percent. I’ll be ready for training camp.”

    How familiar are you with defensive coordinator Robert Saleh’s defensive scheme?

    “If it’s similar to [Alabama head] coach [Nick] Saban’s defensive scheme, it should be easy. Just different terminology.”

  14. http://www.49erswebzone.com/news/105543-transcript-john-lynch-shanahan-press-conference-following-round/

    “[LB] Rueben Foster, I’ll just be honest, at times, he’s just my kind of player. He plays sideline-to-sideline and he’ll hit anything that moves.”

    JL: “We were all right there together and I always find it really cool that [49ers Hall of Fame head coach] Bill Walsh charged Paraag at one point with coming up with our own trade chart and so he did that. We used it very well today.”

    Was Solomon Thomas clearly the highest graded player on your draft board at the third pick or were there other players with similar grades at that spot?

    JL: “At the third pick, yes he was.”

    Are we to infer that if you got two of the top three players on your board that if the Bears had taken Solomon Thomas, that you would have at three taken Reuben Foster?

    JL: “Perhaps. I mean, it was very likely.”

    1. Loos like that will be the front 7 in base, with nice depth too in Dial, Blair, Lynch, Smith, Armstrong. Tank and Harold too.

      If Tank was lining up at 6T in the minicamp, have to think that is where Thomas will play, with Buckner inside him at 3T. Mitchell at 1T and Armstead at the 4T, with Brooks as the on ball LB outside Armstead. Foster takes Smith’s spot as one of the ILBs.

      In nickel, anybody’s guess as to where Armstead, Buckner and Thomas line up. All over the place is my guess.

      1. Good point on the depth. It’s like night and day from last season.

        Can you imagine if we add Mathis to the front 7 and Witherspoon to the secondary?

        1. That would be very nice indeed! Though I am hoping (almost certainly in vain) that Quincy Wilson falls to the 49ers in the 3rd round.

              1. will,

                I put the question mark after Brooks because he might not start if we draft a SAM. Bowman and Foster will start if healthy.

      2. Guys that play DT in our sub-packages
        Blair
        Thomas
        Armstead
        Buckner

        DE’s in our sub-packages
        Tank
        Brooks
        Lynch
        Harold

        Unless one of our edge rushers develops… the net gain is minimal.

    2. The Base of
      Armstead, Buckner, Mitchell, and Thomas
      should be better against the run than the former base of
      Armstead, Buckner, Mitchell, Brooks
      but I don’t think he is that good of an Edge rusher.

      The problem is the Sub Package for pass rushing downs

      Armstead, Buckner, Thomas, Brooks

      May not be as good as

      Harold, Buckner, Armstead, Brooks.

      As I think Armstead is even more powerful and a better rusher on the inside than Thomas and I dont remember Thomas recording a single sack as DE.

      Basically I think we are getting a more disciplined Brooks.

      1. I wouldn’t over think it. End of the day Thomas has excellent potential as a pass rusher, and will be one of the top three pass rushers on the 49ers along with Buckner and Armstead. His ability to win off the snap with his explosiveness and strength will cause both OTs and interior OL trouble, no matter where he lines up.

        1. Thanks Scooter.
          When I look at my posts after the fact I think it looks like I’m much more upset about the pick than I really am. I should definitely state that I do believe he will be a solid player for years to come, I see him as a more disciplined version of Ahmad Brooks which to many niner fans sounds terrible but would in reality mean he is 8-10 sack a year player… understanding that Brooks routinely missed out on sacks due to being undisciplined.

  15. Paraag may have been instrumental in forging the deal, but I will not praise him too much. I am just glad that he will be used as a resource, and will not be meddling in the play calling or dictating strategies. Glad Lynch was the one who declared that the Niners were entertaining trade backs and Paraag just worked out the details. If Paraag sticks to numbers and contracts, he could help the team, but if he formulates the reasoning behind the ACL player strategies, he will be meddling.

    Looking at the TVC, he did OK, and it is good that both teams benefited. Chicago got the QB they coveted, and the Niners got multiple picks. One of those picks was used to trade up and get a player the Niners coveted.

    1. This is one of the dumber things I’ve read out of you.. Calling plays. Dictating strategies. That’s right out ‘bad fan fiction’ land. All he needs to do is grow a mustache so he twirl the ends of it and say ‘come to me, my pretties!’

      He’s cap and contract. He helps determine worth relative to market. Because of him the 49ers, once the over-the-cap l laughing stock of the NFL (lots of vastly over-paid, under-performing vets) now runs well with the cap. He’s also the one who, at Bill Walsh’s request, came up with the draft value chart the 49ers use. He’s also done some other work on risk-reward, something that you actually require a college education to understand.

      1. Too bad that is exactly what he did when he sat in the coaches booth. He was the one determining how Anal Lytics dictated decisions. The ACL strategy during the draft was another debacle with his fingerprints all over it. He was the one who determined whether to throw the red flag or not, and it sure seemed like the Niners were wasting their time outs like a drunken sailor.

        Luckily, his buddy Baalke was fired, and now the Niners have a real football person calling the shots. Sure, Lynch praised Paraag, but he was the one whose contacts with the Bears made the deal go through. Paraag just worked out the details, and from what I saw, it was fairly even on both sides because inherently, a future draft pick is worth less than a pick from this year.

        Calling me dumb after I called the fact that they would manage to trade back, then imply I do not have a college education just shows your lack of awareness. I do not use multisyllabic words from a high school education. and I predicted something you were dumb enough to discount and said would not be done.

        The Niners leveraged their number 2 status, traded back, got multiple picks, got a future draft pick, and still managed to select the player they targeted all along.

        You certainly did not make that call.

        Maybe your lack of higher education prevented you from thinking of that, or maybe the education just did not work.

        1. Everyone here was calling for a trade back Seb! You were calling for multiple trade backs with implausible scenarios involving trades with players and paying contracts. That’s a far cry from what you are now claiming!

          I do believe you said stay away from Foster!

          In your Reality Distortion Field though you know what’s going on in the coaches box and everywhere else though!

          Funny how you reinterpret reality to suit your current narcissistic delusional tendencies. And I don’t mean funny, ha, ha! But in funny, don’t make eye contact with that sad man, dear!

          1. No, you all wanted to stick with the picks, and said nobody would trade up with the Niners. None of your mocks had anything but the assigned picks.

            My last mock had a trade back with the Jets, but I guess the Jets were going to be content to fail with McCown, after missing out on the best QBs in this draft class. I fully admit that I missed the Bear’s trade, but previously mentioned their interest in Trubisky, and thought the Jags may be a good team to trade back with.

            I am also observant, and read things about how Paraag did insert himself, with Baalke’s blessing, into the coaches booth. If you did not think Anal lytics were over used, that is your opinion. My opinion is that they were used constantly, but the problem was, the other teams used them too, so all they had to do is work backwards, to discover what the Niners were going to do. No wonder they were dunderingly predictable.

            Luckily, with Lynch now in charge, Paraag will be relegated to being a support, and football decisions will be left with the football people. Sure, he worked out the compensation with his Bear’s counterpart, but he was not the instigator, he was just the numbers guy that worked out the details because Lynch delegated him the task. Lynch was the linchpin of the deal, and his previous contacts made the deal possible.

            I made multiple trade back options just to show what could be done. I acknowledged that it needed to be a good deal for both sides, and the Bear’s trade was exactly that.

            My reality is that you will not have the class like Scooter, who gave me kudos for making a good call.

            It was as if Lynch read my 10 point post, and followed it.

            He did another thing I advocated. I wrote that the Niners should use a later pick to move up and get a player they really coveted, especially if they know that a previous team will select that player ahead of them.

            So keep bloviating about narcissistic fantasies. I will just stick to football.

          2. I did say stay away from Foster with the second pick, but when he dropped to the end of the first round, he was an incredible opportunity.

            While I agree with Grant that he does have a red flag for drugs and his medical condition is not optimal, his potential is sky hig-…. Er, through the roof.

            I will also assert that the Niners should take King Solomon 10 times out of 10 over Foster.

              1. Your reality is being an obnoxious snark.

                Still cant bring yourself to give me kudos for making a correct call, but I expect nothing less from you.

              2. What call. Several made similar calls including me. I do not expect pats on the back for it! My first mock had a trade back and a trade forward scenario back into the first. It’s not the right call as I predicted the team would take Williams at 12 and Mahones at 27. You don’t see me clamoring on about some such nonsense like an entitled 3 year old!

                Please get some sense, a new hobby, a little peace of mind, you are really very sad if you need us to feel like you’ve accomplished something.

  16. Rest of the draft mock.

    Rd. 3 Ahkello Witherspoon CB
    Rd. 3 Josh Reynolds WR
    Rd. 4 Carlos Henderson WR/KR
    Rd. 4 Joe Mathis LB/OTTO
    Rd. 5 Jerod Evans QB
    Rd. 5 Brian Allen CB
    Rd. 6 Rudy Ford S
    Rd. 6 Aaron Jones HB
    Rd. 7 Corey Levin OG

  17. I think it was a perfectly okay move. The front seven of this team are the biggest problem. Not only were they incapable of stopping the run, but they were incapable of stopping the underneath passing game and rushing the passer.

    And while they spent a lot of money on that WILL from Oakland (Smith) he wasn’t any good in Seattle and he wasn’t any good in Oakland, they may as have saved it. I don’t see him as anything but a stop-gap role-player. So Foster makes sense at WILL as he immediately upgrades the front seven over Smith.

    As for Lynch, why do you even think he’ll be around?

  18. Funniest thing I read this AM:

    Finally, there is Lynch, who squeezed (or was amazingly offered) three picks from Chicago Bears’ general manager Ryan Pace in exchange for one place in the draft. Pace, who was immediately described by Wikipedia as “the soon-to-be former general manager,” took North Carolina quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, whom the 49ers had little interest in.

    Ah, Internet, never change. It’s lolz every day.

  19. Love the pick. I’ve been towing the line for Foster since day one. My philosophy on RF is simple; he immediately becomes our best LB and meets our need for an impact player.
    Grade B+ because of shoulder concerns. But if can get healthy and stay clean we have the steal of the draft at 31.

  20. Now is time to temper expectations! These guys are just coming in and injuries have a way of crushing any of the loftiest of sports aspirations!

    1. EC9,
      This is true of every top player chosen. All we have to go by is their college tape/play and potential. I’m certainly not crowning any our picks to be the next Xgreat-player. We’ve learned over the years that college glory does not always translate to NFL glory.

      But given what we’ve seen of Thomas and Foster, I believe that we can feel pretty good about them and their eventual impact on the team.
      Lynch and Shanahan have already surpassed in rd 1, what it took Baalke 4 years to accomplish. And many of Baalke’ picks still on the team have yet to make any significant noise.

      1. I really like the Foster pick AES and like the trade down a lot. Not that keen on Thomas as I don’t think he’s a good fit nor do I think he will be as great an NFL player as people think. Too many question marks in him for me. Hope I’m wrong though. Hope I’m really wrong and he blows it up! I hope that Razor makes me eat my words.

  21. BTW to clarify much of my earlier comments…
    Lest someone think I dont like Solomon Thomas as a prospect… that is not the case at all. I believe he will be a very solid player, I just don’t necessarily like his fit on this team… or more importantly what it says about Defo and Armstead.
    Best Case scenario in my opinion is if he can prove me wrong and play the edge. If he can, then every complaint I have is instantly null and void. And the pass rush would be vastly improved.

    Adding this for a breakdown of his game…
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OoxMuXVfGI8

    1. Razor,
      You will especially love the burst he shows in the link provided. He repeatedly beats everyone off the LOS… this lends to the idea that he can play the edge.
      Especially if given time to understand the bend required at the edge.

      1. I never was a doubting Thomas when the question of his ability to rush off the edge was begged. Thanks for the link!

        1. I remember when the Stanford bowl game was on, and you were wowed by King Solomon. I think you had a draft crush on him from that moment.

      1. That comment was directed at Razor, whom I agree with. This first round was an incredible success, and Lynch did a masterful job.

    1. Well, talent pool considered, Buckner would have been the #1 or #2 prospect in this year’s draft. Whereas Thomas would have been in the 6-to-10 range in last year’s draft. So those graphics don’t surprise me. And Armstead… Yeah, I’m thinking that’s about right for a player of his collegiate standing/ability. He was a #15-to-#20 guy.

  22. Apparently they must be real satisfied with Jimmy in the backfield in order to pass on Adams. I think Jimmy will do well.

  23. This was a win-win trade for SF and Seattle. The 49ers get a ‘heat seeking missile hell bent on destruction’ while Seattle gets and extra pick and probably get the player they were targeting with their 1st round pick.

    1. Do not like the fact that the Niners gave them an additional pick, but it really depends on who they pick with it, and if that player will succeed or not.

      However, Seahawks gave the Niners a player they covet, and having Foster just made the defense a lot better.

      I hope the Seahawks rue the day they ever made that deal.

    1. I had him at the top of Round 2 in my mock draft. I really wanted TJ Watt, but I put in Thomas at #2 and therefore I felt taking Peterman at #2 was probably the best thing for the long-term.

      1. Moses, I agree that Watt was the better prospect in my opinion, for a number of reasons, I would like the team to make some moves. Still need some cover corners. Would have liked the team Tom make a play for Zay Jones too but doubt that will happen. Hope they snag Peterman but at the risk of stating the obvious not be Bear like. Is it a surprise to all of you that the Browns acted somewhat rationally?

  24. When I went to bed last night the word was the 9ers gave up the 4th rd pick they got from Chi to move back up into the 1st Rd. Is that true? I thought I saw something different on the crawl on NFL network this morn.

      1. What a great move. Having spent several years in New Orleans, I especially like the fact that they scooped the Saints on Foster, hah Saints, who were slavering to take him with the next pick. Then Loomis did a predictably stupid thing by grabbing an offensive lineman who was not a first rounder and ignored the glaring need at LB on their floundering defense. Brees as great as he has been is near the end. As long as Loomis and Payton are in charge down there the Saints will continue to muddle along in mediocrity.

      2. I know that part but what picks did we give up to get him? I thought it was #’s 34 and 111 but this morn I thought I saw something different on the NFL Net.

  25. Apparently Foster needs a second surgery to repair his torn rotator cuff. Still stoked about the pick but sounds like it might be awhile before he’s ready.

    1. On the contrary. He has said himself that his shoulder is 90% recovered and that he’ll be fully ready to go by training camp.. Quite sure that Lynch and company did their medical homework. There is some risk as always with any injury as to full recovery but it appears to be minimal in this illustrious case.

      1. @red & andes

        you’re both correct.

        Former Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster has received a positive injury prognosis ahead of the 2017 NFL draft.

        According to his agent Malki Kawa, the projected first-round pick is ahead of schedule and should be ready for training camp.

        however

        However, Shane Alexander of Inside The Pylon reported Monday the shoulder has not healed correctly and he might need another surgery.

        http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2704246-reuben-fosters-shoulder-surgery-recovery-ahead-of-schedule-says-agent

        Foster’s agent refutes the 2nd surgery report

        Real info from combine recheck: @ferrarifoster is ahead of schedule. Will be ready for training camp.

        http://alabama.247sports.com/Bolt/Reuben-Fosters-agent-refutes-shoulder-surgery-report-52355491

      2. Consider the source. Niners should talk to the doctors to get a better idea, and I am content that he will play this year, but they should not rush him back and risk further injury.

        1. i’m sure they talked to Marcus Lattimore’s doctors as well as Carradine’s doctors (his knee bothered him much longer than originally expected…of course it didn’t help that the Niners asked him to put on weight for an interior DL position).

          The Niners signed Malcom Smith to play WILL backer which is likely Foster’s position. Smith isn’t a great player but he knows the system so Foster can sit behind him and learn for part of the season while he fully heals. then he can take over and Smith can be experienced depth.

          1. “Smith isn’t a great player but he knows the system so Foster can sit behind him and learn for part of the season while he fully heals”
            That was exactly my first thought when Foster’s choice was announced!

          2. If I hadn’t gone to bed figuring the night was done, my thought would have been the same one as when I saw what happened — Smith was going to be second string by the time Foster walked up to the podium to accept Goodell’s accolades on being drafted.

    2. No. Someone else said that. Of course, if it’s true, it’s a Hipaa violation and a crime. So I’d be lawyering up.

  26. So as far as grading is concerned, as useless an exercise as this is at this point, I would give the first pick a solid A just on the trade alone. The actual pick I think is a B to B- for reasons I have given before and everyone knows. The second pick I thought was a very good move to pick up a top 5 talent for a second round pick using only a little capital gained from the previous pick. That one is an A+. It is a risky pick but it is worth the risk. Sometimes you have take a risk and I think that Lynch alluded to that in his PC the other day.

    1. Grading the Foster pick is highly dependent on his medical condition and recovery (the red flags that caused many teams to pass on him). If the Niners are right they got a steal. If they’re wrong, they picked a medical bust.

      1. No, it was not an ACL injury, so there is way more of a chance that he will heal fully.. He is young and strong, and will have good people helping him rehab.

      1. Nope, I never disliked Thomas I just didn’t/don’t believe he’ll ultimately be considered worth that high of a pick.

        1. You’re a doubting Thomas. I can respect that. His play on the field will make you a Believer, I ain’t no deceiver. Mountains move before my eyes. Destiny planned out, I don’t need no handout. Speculation of the wise, King Solomon!

  27. Paraag is the biggest surprise coming out of this draft! I always gave credit to Baalke for some of those clever trades and extra picks. Now it looks like it was Paraag all along!
    Way to go!

    1. So you are saying there’s a chance that all those “Thanks, Baalke!” exclamations of the past should now read “Thanks ParaagI”?

  28. Grant, didn’t you have Foster in one of your mock drafts going to the 49ers at #2. And now your giving them a B for snatching him up at 31. Are you mad the 49ers front office is smarter than you…? Just give credit where credit is due. Its a much better look for you!

      1. Grant,
        Your writing is usually impeccable but condone? I’m not sure that is the right word. How about recommend? Condone has to do with morality and drug use might be stupid its certainly unhealthy but not immoral.imho

            1. Old Coach, I personally have smoked weed every day since high school except a period before a drug test.

              However,the NFL has gone Reefer Madness, and the drug and alcohol industries have imposed arbitrary restrictions on an herb that has been in the pharmacopoeia record for 3000 years.

              If a player is going to be suspended for 4 games with a diluted urine sample, heck ya, I do not want him to smoke. If he does it again, he may be banished for a whole year.

              Those draconian punishments are hypocritical when you looks at the deluge of beer commercials and the drug cocktails fed athletes to keep them competing. I am not even going to go on about steroid use and roid rage against females.

              Personally, I hope they change the rules, because pot does have medical applications. I found that pot helped my best friend have an appetite and alleviated the nausea from the chemo. I credit pot for helping him last for 6 months longer, and while still in pain, the pot helped make him more relaxed and comfortable.

        1. Ha ha, Coach — that use of “condone” in this context would have elicited an angry glare from made my late high school English teacher, Mr. Saunders!

        2. Condone means accept or allow. Comes from the same Latin word that is used to donate. Not to give ones donation to in other words.

          Grand is simply not lending his support.

          In modern usage it often implies a moral stance though it shouldn’t be assumed.

      2. I wonder if Lynch thinks he got a Warren Sapp draft situation 2.0. Lynch is/was well aware of Sapp’s pot habit but I’m guessing was fine with it as long as he produced on the field? Perhaps that’s Lynch’s expectation concerning Foster too?

        From what the analysts said, it wasn’t the diluted urine failed drug test that scared most teams away, it was the shoulder injuries. Shoulder injuries aren’t a good thing for a player that hits as violently as Foster does.

        1. Queen Victoria had really bad period pains, so she’d go back to the latrine and burn one to help alleviate them….

    1. Grant is just tempering expectations. Foster did fall, almost out of the first round, so teams were leery of his Combine blowup and the rumor that he may need additional surgery.

      Failing that drug test was another red flag, and he could disappear in a puff of smoke. He might pull an Aaron Lynch on them. I certainly could see why Grant would give him a B, although I am giving him an A+ because of his potential.

      Niners need to surround him with the right support and eliminate the enablers. Maybe hire Patrick Willis to work with him.

  29. I’ll give the moves an A+, and the actual players we got a B+. Thomas is a A and Foster is a B only because of his physical question marks. All together the day is an A. Looking forward to tonight. Quarterback? Webb? Kaaya? Peterman? Someone else? Should be fun!

    1. While I struck out in the first round, my last mock has Webb.

      Obtaining that 67th pick may be just the ticket to get him.

  30. Both of these 1st round picks bring attitude to the defense in a good way. Both of these guys seem to love football. They play hard and their enthusiasm should be infectious in the locker room, weight room and huddle. It will be interesting to see if a trend develops with Lynch picks through the draft over time.

  31. Best moment of the night other then nabbing Foster at 31 was the quick video they showed at Bears draft party of the crowd reacting to the QB pick. LMAO

  32. One thing a combine can’t measure is heart. Thomas has it in spades. He has a non-stop motor. He is a winner. He is a leader. He will help in stopping the run and getting to the QB. A VERY GOOD, SOLID pick.

    However, I still believe Adams would have been a GREAT pick. He is all of the above. When you consider he would have helped to stop the run AND he plays in the secondary I just believe he would make more plays than Thomas.

    When the Niners drafted Lott he became our identity immediately on defense and he set the tone for the defense. Adams would have done the same.

    Only time will tell if we missed the boat on Adams.

  33. Titans had a good first day. Put top players in big positions of need. They need a FS and a middle linebacker today.

    They’re going to be a good team if Mariota returns healthy and continues to progress. Both of which remain to be seen.

      1. Jackson was a late first rounder, it was a minimal reach at #18. They likely wanted to move back a few spots but with no one calling they still got the best CB on the board at the time. They also got whom I believe is the best WR prospect and the little top 10 run on receivers proved they took him at the right spot.

    1. Brooks is a SAM backer. Foster will likely play WILL or MIKE backer. Malcom Smith or Bowman’s spot. Smith is not a great player but knows what he’s doing so it’s not hard to imagine Foster supplanting him. Or Bowman’s injuries have caught up with him and he’s not close to the same player he was in the past (or gets injured again) and Foster replaces him.

      1. He could always put on weight. He’s been as big as 241 which is big enough for SAM in a 4-3. But I’d prefer him in a WILL position based on his skill set.

        1. in the base Under scheme the SAM is on the line of scrimmage and must play the D gap and hold the edge.

          Foster is a dynamic player in space and makes players on the move. He fills holes quickly and chases down players. Putting him up on the line of scrimmage as a SAM is a waste of his skills IMO.

      2. I imagine that the Niners will not pidgeonhole players or play players out of position. They will put out the best players and let them play to their strengths. I envision seeing Bowman and Foster both out on the field, and both playing in tandem, helping out each other.

        1. They will have to if they are going to use Solomon Thomas and the other two they drafted in previous years…

      3. In the base defense he’s just an ILB along side Bowman. I would assume Foster would eventually take over the MLB role in Nickel.

  34. No doubt Adams is a great player and would have been a solid pick but like I’ve said it doesn’t matter how great you are in the defensive backfield if you have to chase opponents around for 5-8 seconds because of NO PASS RUSH or your left on an island because we have to blitz 7-9 guys to get pressure, which has been the case since our last significant pass rush, our last SB year. Build from the front to the back. Looks like that’s what their doing.

  35. Sigh, no second round pick, so the Niners may be waiting for a while.

    Niners have the 66th and 67th picks, so maybe they should trade back with on of them.

    Lynch should identify 7 players he will be happy drafting, then move back with Cincy. The Bengals may want to leapfrog 6 teams and get a player they covet. They would trade pick numbers 73 and 138 for pick number 66, It would almost balance out perfectly in the TVC.

    Niners would trade back, select from a different area in the draft, get an additional pick while still getting a player they wanted all along.

  36. Glad to see the EMT’s were not necessary in Healdsburg or Indiana last night. Both guys got their wishes, trade back and Thomas.

  37. It seems after reading column after column of Cohn’s, that it is painful for him to say anything positive about the Niners……….what a putz.

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