After two days in the draft, the 49ers have added four players. On Thursday, they focused on the offensive line with the additions of tackle Anthony Davis and guard Mike Iupati in the first round.
On Friday, the 49ers’ focused shifted to defense, where the 49ers took safety Taylor Mays of USC and linebacker Navorro Bowman of
“I feel very good about what we’ve been able to accomplish,” Singletary said. “I think if you look at the identity of the 49ers, every one of these guys we picked fit the identity. As long as we can stay close to that, stay on track, we got guys who are going to hit people and be physical, guys who are going to do their jobs. That’s exciting to me.”
Here’s what Singletary had to say this evening at the conclusion of the third round:
–Singletary said when he looks at Navorro on film a lot of things jump out. “He’s always going to the football,” Singletary said. “He uses his hands very well and does not spend a lot of time getting locked on linemen and getting in tussles with those guys, he’s going to the football.”
–“Right now, he (Bowman) is going to come in and add depth. We were able to add Scott McKillop last year. He came in and he’s still developing. He’s going to come in and do the same thing. At the very beginning, he’s going to come in and help out in special teams and work his tail off to learn the defense and some of the things we do.”
At 240 pounds, Singletary said Bowman has the size to play either inside linebacker position.
–The 49ers sat up a personal interview with Bowman at the combine and spoke with him to learn more about some of the off-the-field issues. “We worked out way through that,” Singletary said. “After that interview, we felt good about the possibility of taking him. I’m sure he’s worked through some of those issues and has matured. So I’m excited to get that behind him and work forward.”
–Singletary said, as a Hall of Fame linebacker himself, when his team picks a linebacker, “It’s always a little more personal with it’s a linebacker because you know it. You know it more than you know anything else.”
–Mays is a very intriguing player. He’s obviously physically gifted, but he often went long periods of time without making plays.
“I really don’t know what he was asked to do at USC,” Singletary said. “You look at the film and you see the guy back about 20 yards. It’s pretty amazing. He came in and we had him for the interview, there were some things he was not asked to do. I’m excited about him. Any time you have a guy who has the intangibles he does and the ability to move and for him to have the range he has, I think our DB coaches, Johnnie Lynn and (Vance Joseph), will get their hands on him and get some work done to see exactly what we have.
“One thing I know is he’s hungry. He wants to be a great football player. And he wants to be a 49er.”
–Mays said he comes into the NFL with a chip on his shoulder after going untouched through the first 48 picks in the draft. Singletary can relate after he entered the league as a second-round draft pick. Singletary said he was able to use that slight of not being selected in the first round to fuel him throughout his career.
“I remember going through the draft when I felt I had done everything in college that I could possibly do to be a first-round pick,” Singletary said. “And when they tell you you’re just not tall enough, you kick every tire you could find on every car you could find. And you probably say a lot of silly things just out of hurt. But the important thing is you get it behind you and you put it in perspective and really understand the opportunity at hand.”
–When asked to elaborate on the saying “silly things” comment – regarding Mays’ comments about Pete Carroll, Singletary said, “I don’t know what the relationship is between he and Pete. But when you put yourself in his shoes, I can only imagine. I played for a guy for a number of years and whether you deserved to be picked or not deserved to be picked, it’s one of those things where, ‘Wait a minute, I thought I was your guy.’ When it doesn’t happen, it’s got to hurt. I’m thankful I never had to go through that. But I know what he said and I’m just thankful . . . I think he did the best job he could possibly do without saying something that was a low blow.”
* * *
The 49ers do not have a pick in the fourth or fifth rounds tomorrow. They have three picks in the sixth round (Nos. 173, 182,
191 and 206 overall) and one pick in the seventh (No. 224).
* * *