New 49ers mock draft

I’m keeping this mock draft short and sweet.

Pick 30: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State. The 49ers will take the best slot cornerback available. If Roby is gone, Jason Verrett will be the pick. Kyle Fuller also is an option, but it seems doubtful he will last until the 30th pick.

Pick 56: Paul Richardson, WR, Colorado. One of the fastest receivers in the draft. A true deep threat, like DeSean Jackson. Richardson told the Denver Post he wants to return punts and kicks, too.

Pick 61: Brett Smith, QB, Wyoming. A sleeper. Smith is accurate and athletic — more athletic than Jimmy Garoppolo. And younger, too. Smith ran a 4.51 at his Pro Day. He has the speed and the arm strength Jim Harbaugh covets.

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  1. Grant – Roby/Richardson are terrific mock selections but Niners are not picking QB in first 2 rounds. If they do, I’ll send you a $50 gift card for restaurant of your choice.
    Btw, how bout them Bruins? Did you see the game last night?….Looks like a 4 seed is coming.

    1. Why was Howland playing Anderson at the 4? He’s such a good 3.

      The Niners need a legitimate backup plan in case Kaepernick wants more than he is worth to the Niners.

      1. Grant,

        Kaep is staying, no back up plan is needed. I don’t see them picking a QB in the second round, I also see them moving up in the first round too, for a better receiver , because Crabs is going to want top 10 money which is in the $10 – $12 mill range and Crab is not a top 10 receiver.

        1. When healthy, Crabtree is definitely a top 10 WR. Look what he did in 2012 after Kaep took over and what he did when he came back this last season.

      2. This mock is worthless. Roby isn’t a slot CB, he’s probably the most athletic CB in the draft outside of Gilbert and he has size. Oh, and Ben Howland doesn’t coach UCLA, Steve Alford does. Better luck next time.

        1. Geoff, tMoney, Paul – Grant was referring to last year, when Howland played Kyle Anderson at the 4 position.
          Believe me, Grant knows who UCLA’s coach is.

      3. Anderson was playing point. Anytime they get in trouble they get him the ball at the top of the key. Bruins looked great but Zona lost that game on the free throw line.

    2. I think Richardson is a very poor fit for the 49ers and here is why:

      1. Vulnerable to the jam.

      2. Does not separate consistently.

      3. Too often senses the oncoming defender and allows the pass to slip through his fingers.

      4. Gets out-muscled at the catch point for 50-50 balls.

      5. Lets some throws into his body and drops throws he shouldn’t.

      6. Has been injured and durability could be an issue.

      7. Is very lean. Needs to bulk up and get stronger.

      8. Underpowered blocker.

      Now, I want you to close your eyes and imagine a wide receiver that is weak, scared, butter fingered, injury prone, can’t get separation, and can’t make contested catches on the field against the Legion of Boom. They will manhandle him and intimidate him.

      1. Richardson is like desean Jackson fast small and has a strong attitude they should take desean and him and they’ll be unstoppable

  2. This is the worst mock draft I have seen so far.. I have seen alot.. Balke will move up in the draft for either mike Evans, gibert or denard… He will not stay at pick 30.. If by a miracle he does stay at pick 30, he will pick best available player instead of reaching for a corner.. A QB in the second? Are you out of your mind… A QB might get taken in the 6th or 7th. A player like Logan Thomas.

  3. I like Brett Smith but that might be a bit high for him. He is similar to Johnny Manziel but in that regard he falls into the “poor mans” category. I was very high on him but then I watched his highlights and was discouraged due to a very funky throwing motion. I have to say that in 2013 his motion improved a bit but it is still a little ugly. Smith has a lot of impressive moments though but I just cannot see him in the second round.

    1. Why were you high on him before his highlight tapes convinced you otherwise? Those tapes showcase the players best plays. If his throwing motion has improved from 2012, wouldn’t you like him more now? I’m just curious as to why you downgrade him now, but I agree that there is no way he is a second round pick.

      1. Like I have said on Grants forum a number of times I am an Oregon Duck fan. Smith played his high school ball in Salem Oregon and was recruited by the Ducks but was never offered a scholarship. I think the Ducks asked him to walk-on but he ended up at Wyoming. That was 2011 and the Ducks already had Marcus Mariota committed and for a time they had Johnny Manziel committed also. There was a lot of in state pressure on Chip Kelly to offer Smith at the time. He was labelled a perfect fit for the Ducks read option offense.

        At that time I had read what a great high school player he was and later at Wyoming I had heard the same. I had built up expectations for him and envisioned the 49ers getting a steal if they selected him. I wanted the Oregon home grown boy to do well preferably with the 49ers. I had watched some tape on him but a few days ago I decided to really see for myself what kind of pro prospect he was. I watched highlights and some game footage. I am not a scout for sure but I did not see a player I felt worthy of high round consideration.

        He is athletic but not overly so. He makes plays with his feet but is far from guys like Manziel or Mariota in that category.

        He is a fairly accurate short passer but does not display a real strong arm in my opinion. I have read a number of articles that state that his arm strength is in question.

        His throwing motion, especially in 2012 is unorthodox to say the least. He resembles a catcher short arming a throw to second base. But he does get the ball off quickly and on short throws accurately.

        He has been called a poor mans Manziel but I am leaning more towards a poor mans Jeff Garcia. Not as athletic or fast as I thought and a throwing motion that needs at least as much or more work than Kaepernicks motion did when he came out and at least Kaep had a certified rocket arm when he graduated from Nevada where Smith does not.

        He has high character and all the intangibles and made lots of plays for the Cowboys but in my non scout opinion he is not close to a second round pick at this point.

          1. If you trust pro day numbers (and I don’t) you could say Smith is faster than Manziel but there is a difference between faster and better and I feel that Manziel has proven his running ability far better going against SEC defenses than Smith has against Mountain West competition. Anyhow, I am not at all convinced that Smith is faster than Manziel but I am convinced that Manziel is a better runner than Smith.

            I have read a number of times similar things about both players arms–”not strong but probably strong enough to play in the NFL”. I have seen Manziel make a lot of great throws. Short, medium and long. I do not think that Smith’s arm is any stronger than Manziel’s if it is at all.

            At this point Manziel is the better prospect and it is my opinion that Manziel belongs in the first day of the draft and Smith probably belongs in the third day. Love to see Smith succeed though.

              1. yep when johnny football is moving around in the pocket and slipping tackles that was all mike evans…

              2. Evans made Manziel? Do you even watch college football? Evans was a good college receiver but Manziel was a good college QB too. Evans had 69 receptions on the year which means Manziel completed 231 passes to other receivers on the team in 2013. Evans didn’t make Manziel. It’s the other way around and it started in 2012 – not 2013.

                I like Mike Evans. He has a chance to be a good NFL receiver. He also has a chance to be the next Mike Williams. Evans is not all that fast, he doesn’t come out of breaks very quickly, and he tends to pout if he doesn’t get involved early. I’m a fan of his college game but in the pros its definitely caveat emptor.

            1. Houston, if somebody talks about Manziel while ignoring his performances against Alabama, they’re just trolling. Nothing new.

          2. Manziel can make every throw. He isn’t a physical specimen, but he is a good athlete. The questions relating to him are whether his style of play can hold up because of his size. If he were two inches taller he would be the first pick.

            1. I say we trade up with the Ravens, one spot ahead of the Jets, who also want Brandin Cook and select him, then, if the cards fall right in the last half of the first round, we move up again and get Jason Varret from tcu. Excellent slot corner with great speed. .01 seconds from being fastest db at combine. Need that kind of speed when RW extends plays like that bomb in NFCCG. 2 slot guys on both sides of the ball. That’s what we need! Now go get em. They should pay me for that advice;)

              1. The Jets are also reportedly high on Marquise Lee, but I wouldn’t touch him or Cook in that range. And with the CB fallout that has occurred with that team, it wouldn’t surprise me if they take a CB instead.

          3. If Smith has a stronger arm than Johnny Football, then Manziel will not last long in the league. Smith was tossing up ducks. Perhaps he is ‘considerably faster’ based on reported 40 times, but not as agile and without Manziel’s incredible spatial awareness.

            As for the picks that might happen (CB, WR), I’m not a fan of 170 pounders, although DeSean has been uniquely successful. Richardson isn’t in that category, though. I’d rather we end up with Moncrief or Matthews. Who knows if they’ll be there late 2nd. Roby is a specimen, I’d be fine with that pick.

        1. Domingo, thanks for the intelligent reply. I appreciate it. Iffy measurables+low competition level=late round/udfa.

  4. I like Richardson but I just cannot see Baalke drafting him. Richardson’s hands measured under 9 inches at the combine and we all know how Trent loves big hands and long arms,

  5. Good stuff Grant.
    I have B.Roby as well but as my 1st pick in the 2nd rd.

    1. Brandin Cooks (WR) – speed – productive – good hands – explosive first step.

    2a. Bradley Roby (CB) – good coverage – size – good open field tackler.

    2b. Deon Bucannon (Safety) – great instincts – sure tackler – good coverage.

    3a. Bryon Stork (C) – great size and technique – pushes DT back – aggressive.

    3b. Jaylon Watkins (CB) – good coverage – great tackler – instinctive and smart.

    4. Ahmad Dixon (Safety) – explosive tackler – will scare WR’ over the middle.

    5. Andre Williams (RB) – 6′ 230 lbs. 4.5 40 – runs hard – great balance – best straight arm – every down type back.

    6. AC Leonard (TE/Swiss) – big – fast – loves to hit people – *Strong candidate for Swiss Army Knife position which has yet to be established since D.Walkers departure.

    7a. Trey Millard (RB) – same as above (AC Leonard) but with ability to run!

    7b. Justin Britt (OT) – good anchor at OT.

    7c. Spencer Long (OG) – great size – smart and aggressive – nice pick on day 3.

    ***subject to change up to last few days before draft (lol).

    1. I would be ecstatic if the first three picks ended up this way, although I like Stanley Jean-Baptiste and/or Donte Moncrief in the third. But can’t see them taking a running back, let alone two, with a full stable and Jewel Hampton waiting for his shot still…

    2. If this is how the draft pans out (AES’s version), we’d be adding a lot of good talent. The first two picks could make an impact right away by adding depth/competition at CB, and a kick/punt returner and fast receiver to complement our others.

      Buchanon, then, gives us depth at Safety for when Bathea wears down in a couple years, plus another hitter to play special teams. To then add Stork, Watkins, and Dixon in rounds three and four? Sheesh…that’s some talent.

      The only thing I’d consider is adding a d-lineman and maybe an ILB somewhere in rounds 3 – 5.

      Otherwise, much better than Roby, Richardson, and a backup QB.

      1. LuckyGreen,
        I hear ya on drafting D-line and LB. But we went heavy last year on defense with Carradine, Dial, Lemonire and Moody who we need to see this season before spending a pick on D-line and LB.
        We also have to throw in players like Ian Williams, L.Okoye, D.Flemming who were either injured or a project (Okoye).

        At LB, we had Skuta and Wilhoite give us valuable time last year when Willis was hurt.
        I think we’re good at the front 7 positions on defense. The loss of Rogers, Whitner and Brown weakens our DB’s and need to be backfilled with reliable players.
        Brock and Culliver look to be our CB’ but we will need more youth at this area because Bethea and Clemons could conceivably give us only one good season and E.Wright has not stepped up.

        At the RB position, will need what I refer to as a “hammer” back that can carry the load as an every down player. Andre Williams (Boston College) has the ability to take A.Dixon’ spot immediately and seamlessly.
        F.Gore is my boy’ but the old warrior has not been a big factor come playoff time because of wear and tear.

        Trey Millard (RB, Okl) could be a pleasant surprise and real sleeper in the later rds and along with another big fast player like AC Leonard (TE, Tenn, St.) could fill the Swiss Army Knife (SAK) missing from our offense.

        The only thing that gives me pause on my latest mock is not drafting a QB, but that could change in the coming weeks after most pro-day workouts have been completed.

        1. AES…fully agree with the logic. Especially with going after a RB, too. With Gore most likely in his last year (at least as the featured back), and Lattimore still unproven, insurance is a must. And in 2015, the depth chart will look a lot different.

          As for the D-line, it sounds counterintuitive with the current depth (as you pointed out), but when considering that Dorsey only has one year left on his contract, Smith could very well be playing his last season, and Ian Williams and Carradine are to-be-determined based on injury recovery, some insurance may be in order. Not sure where they’d fit on the roster, but a succession plan could be useful if Dorsey and Smith leave, or if Ian Williams and/or Carradine don’t reach pre-injury form.

          Question regarding DB’s…

          You said:
          “Brock and Culliver look to be our CB’ but we will need more youth at this area because Bethea and Clemons could conceivably give us only one good season and E.Wright has not stepped up.”

          I agree with the approach, but wasn’t sure what you were referring to with Clemons.

          1. Sorry, I meant Chris Cook. I wasn’t overly impressed with his numbers with the Vikings. Good tackler but very low output in INT’s.
            Need better ball-hawkers in our DB backfield.

        2. But we went heavy last year on defense with Carradine, Dial, Lemonire and Moody who we need to see this season before spending a pick on D-line and LB.
          We also have to throw in players like Ian Williams, L.Okoye, D.Flemming who were either injured or a project (Okoye).
          There isn’t a player among those names that couldn’t be replaced with a top talent draft pick. Remove Lemoier and you have nothing but question marks. Williams sat out last season, not every player can return from that and be as good as they once were and it wasn’t like he was lighting the world on fire to begin with. Carradine, Dial, Okoye, Flemming, Moody ? ? ? ? ?

          You can assume the front office loves each and every one of them I tend to assume that they think they can stash or lose one or two of them if the right player is available in the draft.

          1. C4C
            I wouldn’t argue with that assessment. Almost anything could happen and in the last three drafts I can only take credit for saying that the 49ers would draft Kaepernick.
            I missed on everything else.
            But it’s still fun!

            1. C4C,
              I still feel that the team’s priority with our first 3 picks is WR, CB and Safety.
              Sure there’s a strong chance they go with a Stud D-lineman if there is one among those first 3 picks.
              This is a very deep draft which means we could find a stud D-lineman or a stud WR,CB, Safety beyond our first 3 picks.

              Like I said earlier, the only thing I would change on my 2nd mock would be drafting a QB. but that possibility is certainly there in my next mock.
              But as I said anything could happen and Merriam’sWebsters Dictionary describes the word ‘mock’ best: “something to laugh at and make fun of.”
              Yup, I’m just having fun with my mocks, I have no scientific method here (lol).

    3. Good stuff AES, but what chance do you think Roby falls to late 2nd? I find that hard to believe. Great pick if he does though.

      Not sure I understand taking Bucannon so early, or why you’d follow it up with Dixon later – 2 x SS? Bethea is signed to a 4-year deal, and he’ll see out at least two of those. The need for a SS in the draft is gone. They can wait until next year if they want – Dahl and Spillman are fine as the backups. If they do take a safety will it be in the 2nd round of a year that has a pretty weak safety class?

      Also, the 49ers no longer have the 6th rounder ;-)

      1. I’m wondering if Marqueston Huff makes sense instead of both Buchanon and Dixon. Obviously we don’t need a FS, but two SS on the bench becomes a little more redundant. Huff can play CB, too, though, and even projects as such in the NFL. His ability to play CB in coverage and backup at FS would make him fairly valuable…or so I’d think.

      2. Scooter,
        I see your point and they certainly make good sense (as always).
        But Bucannon and Ah. Dixon are two really good players who could be a bargain in this draft because it’s so deep in talent.

        Bucannon is a Reid clone given his intelligence and great coverage skills. While Ah. Dixon can put fear in any WR who dares to go over the middle.
        I like Bethea but I thought that the Clemons signing was a reach. The two aforementioned players could help us sooner than later imo.

        Roby may be gone with our 2nd pick but he was a probability pick, i.e. hoping he’s still there when we pick at that spot. But if Roby is gone I believe we still go with a CB.

    4. I expect roby to be gone by the 25th pick. I like the Brian Stork pick but their is no way Watkins is there in the 3rd round. Bucannon would be a pick also but why select 2 running backs and only 1 receiver

    5. Good choices all but Bucannon won’t last until they use either 2nd rd. picks. He’s gone in the first 12 selections of the RD. 2. His stock is way up and MANY teams need safety help,

  6. Can’t see us drafting a QB early. Whether we like the trade or not, the Niners brought Gabbert in for a reason (probably because they like him better than every QB they’ve evaluated in the draft). I can see us drafting 2 corners and a WR with our top three picks, then probably a centre thereafter.

  7. You may have Richardson and Smith a round or two too high in each case. I could see McCarron in the early third, so if TB likes him, maybe late 2nd isn’t so much different than early third. I’d tend to defer to Harbaugh and Baalke on QB evals.

  8. Richardson told the Denver Post he wants to return punts and kicks, too.
    Richardson’s agent has coached him on saying the things teams want to hear.

  9. The 49ers need:

    1. A receiver to help their production in the redzone.

    2. A receiver with great speed to spread the field.

    3. A receiver good enough to be the #1 receiver if Michael Crabtree does not re-sign when he becomes a free agent.

    4. A receiver that is talented enough to make an impact that can help them overcome the Seattle Seahawk’s defense.

    5. A receiver that has the talent and skills to contribute today, rather than being “raw” or a “project” and risking being a dud.

    This draft has a few wide receivers that can meet these objectives. And, notwithstanding their position, they are also good enough to be the best player available.

    I do not think it is wise for the 49ers to stay at #30 and risk missing out on a true tier 1 receiver. I do not think it is wise for the 49ers to wait for all the studs to get drafted by other teams and draft whatever scraps are left in the 1st round or 2nd round. I do not like the “play it cool” and look for “value” mindset of Baalke. It is good some of the time, maybe even most of the time, but not all of the time. It is not a wise strategy when you have a very specific need and need to aggressively go out and snatch “the” player so that the player can make a very material and significant impact.

    Our competition is a moving target. If we are going to win the Super Bowl, the AFC opponent is probably going to be the Broncos or the Patriots. These teams are getting better and getting better fast by making aggressive moves. We need to keep up in this arms race to make sure we maintain our place as one of top 2 teams in the league. And if we cannot be aggressive during free agency due to the cap or the philosophy of obtaining value, then we need to be aggressive in the draft and leverage the fact that a draft pick is going to be easier on our cap.

    I understand that cornerback is a position of need, but a good corner is not going to put is over the hump, unless he is a true shutdown corner that will dominate, like Revis or Sherman. And I do not think there is anyone in this draft of that caliber.

    Sometimes you have to look at the big picture and not lose the forest for the trees. Big picture, the last three years, one of the main reasons we lost was because lack of production out of wide receivers and in the redzone. Even ignoring the way the Super Bowl and NFC Championship ended the last 2 years, the 49ers has only 1 catch among all wide receivers against the Giants. That is our pain. It is time to alleviate it.

    Big picture, this draft is unique in the sense that there are a few tier 1 receivers. It would be pure incompetence to not take advantage of that; to walk away without the best of breed in the draft. Context is important and a quality wide receiver may not be available next draft, whereas a good corner may be available.

    Do not overthink it. Trade up and snatch a stud wide receiver with the first pick.

      1. Ha! Well you can’t plan for it, but sometimes opportunities arise. It has to be perceived as advantageous by both sides. According to Bill Polian, right about now the teams are beginning contact with each other to see what the costs/market might be for choices and where any mutual interests might lie. Closer to the draft they touch base again, perhaps with a few more specifics and What Ifs?, so that they don’t have to reinvent the wheel while on the clock.
        Then it’s about who’s still there and who isn’t, and what does a GM want to do about it?

      2. You make a decent point, but difficult does not mean impossible. And performing under difficult circumstances is how you earn your paycheck. Baalke traded up in the past numerous times, as many teams have done. We may be in a position to do so this year as well, considering we have more draft picks this year, less needs, and should prioritize to sacrifice a few quantity picks for a quality pick. You just need a willing trade partner, and if the price is right (as it was for the Cowboys last year), it can happen.

        There is a very real possibility that Watkins, Evans, Lee, Beckham Jr., Cooks, and Benjamin will all be gone by the 49ers pick at #30. I do not believe any of the remaining wide receivers, including your recommended Paul Richardson, would make a material difference when going against the top teams in the NFL, so a passive Baalke would have wasted one of the deepest wide receiver drafts in a while.

        If you were the 49ers GM, you would not try to leapfrog wide receiver needy teams, such as the Saints, Browns, and Chiefs to ensure that you at least draft top 5 wide receiver in the draft? We are not talking about a top 10 pick here, we are talking about going from #30 to #22, assuming they do not trade up as well. If you were GM, you do not think you can pull that off? Or maybe there would be the opportunity to leapfrog the Jets and Ravens, as well, and perhaps get a top 3 wide receiver in the draft. GM Grant Cohen could not make that happen?

              1. So I answered your question, Grant. Now answer this, why Richardson? As I stated above:

                “I think Richardson is a very poor fit for the 49ers and here is why:

                1. Vulnerable to the jam.

                2. Does not separate consistently.

                3. Too often senses the oncoming defender and allows the pass to slip through his fingers.

                4. Gets out-muscled at the catch point for 50-50 balls.

                5. Lets some throws into his body and drops throws he shouldn’t.

                6. Has been injured and durability could be an issue.

                7. Is very lean. Needs to bulk up and get stronger.

                8. Underpowered blocker.

                Now, I want you to close your eyes and imagine a wide receiver that is weak, scared, butter fingered, injury prone, can’t get separation, and can’t make contested catches on the field against the Legion of Boom. They will manhandle him and intimidate him.”

            1. It’s like a card game. You do your homework, pay close attention as it plays out, and play the hand you’re dealt. You can’t say, I’m going after (place favorite name here), but you know what you’d pay if he comes in sight.

          1. The Ravens at #17 or the Steelers at #15. Would probably cost our #1, 2A and 3A to target Justin Gilbert (CB). Still leaves a #2 and #3 to snag a WR (Moncrief, Landry, Abbrederis) and second CB (Watkins, Roberson or Desir). Use the 4th round pick for a center (Stork). Target strong safety in later rounds to develop behind Bethea. Use 5th round pick for QB. Here is where you snag your guy Brett Smith or the guy I like, Logan Thomas. Use the 7th for Dezmen Southward (SS), Jon Halapio (G) and then a red shirt pick, Trey Millard (FB).

          2. It depends on which player you are targeting. If you are not targeting Watkins or Evans, you can try to work out a deal with the Bears, Steelers, and Cowboys to leapfrog the Ravens, Jets, Chiefs, Browns, and Saints and pick up . Those three teams have a lot of holes to fill in their roster, are not in our division, one of them has a history of trading with us in the past, and depending on how the board falls they may be open to a trade. In fact, depending on how the board falls, other teams will be as well.

        1. “And performing under difficult circumstances is how you earn your paycheck”.

          Exactly. We all know what NFL really stands for–Not for long. You get the job done or by by.

          Baalke’s challenge in the draft this year above all else is to land a high quality Wide Receiver and a high quality Cornerback. All other needs are secondary in my opinion. Who cares which position the 49ers draft first. Baalke is loaded with draft picks and should be able to get things done. Move up in the first to land a player at one position and move up in the second to land a player at the other position if thats what it takes. The draft is fairly deep at both positions, especially WR.

          If Baalke, at minimum, does not land a quality WR and a quality CB both of whom are ready to come in and contribute then the draft will be a failure in my opinion. He needs to get it done.

        2. Jame5Bond,

          This is viewed as a very deep draft for WR’s. You have locked onto what you believe are the top 6 and feel the Niners need to get one of them, but there are other options that could also come in and make an impact later on.

          The two starters are set for this team, and they also have a second year player they are high on, so I seriously doubt the impact a rookie WR is going to have on this team.

          In contrast, the two starting CB’s have question marks as does the current leader in the clubhouse for the starting slot CB spot. CB to me is the obvious target for the #1 pick unless there is a substantial run on them, in which case the Niners will have a quality WR or Dlineman to pick from at #30.

    1. Think the Niners select a WR or DB, if their top choices are available at 30th?

      I believe they will target Marqise Lee, much like they targeted Reid last year. Particularly if Lee slips into the 20s.

  10. Grant, how would you rate a draft that had those picks in the 2nd round?

    Richardson could make a nice deep threat WR option, and fits the mold of WR the 49ers have looked at in FA. Good route runner and tracks the deep ball well with good hands. But he struggles with contact, hears footsteps over the middle and won’t make many contested catches. I don’t buy Richardson as the kick or punt returner – with his frame he would be broken in half as a return man. Personally I think Martavis Bryant might suit the 49ers better – Randy Moss was a bit of a failed experiment but that tall, fast WR that can make contested catches downfield would suit the team. They can likely get one of either Richardson or Bryant in the early 3rd round to bring a speed element to the offense. Bruce Ellington may be another option, both as a WR and return man.

    Brett Smith I considered very deeply for the mock I posted in the previous blog post, but in the 4th round. Taking him in the 2nd would be quite the reach.

    Also, I just don’t see Baalke sitting pat and letting the 3 CBs that best suit what he is after (Gilbert, Roby and Fuller) potentially get taken before #30 and falling back on Verrett. I think Verrett is great, but the 49ers already have the 5’10” Brock manning one side, and Baalke has shown he has a strong preference for bigger CBs both on the perimeter and in the slot.

    1. Scooter, I agree with a lot of what you said with exception that I would take San Jose Fales in fourth or fifth and find Wyoming Smith still available in 7th.
      The way I see the rest is that the Niners reach up to one of those top CBs that falls close to them and deal is OK. Justin Gilbert in my mind is particularly worth a short jump up if he should fall a bit. If they are all grabbed early then and no solid best available then they trade down to stock up on second tier CBs and WRs. In other words it seems to me that the # 30 pick could end up (if no falling stars) in a no mans land between top tier and second tier. And we know that Trent likes to collect.

      1. 49ers have never traded back with their first round pick with Baalke in charge. Twice they have traded up (Anthony Davis in 2010 and Eric Reid in 2013). In 2011 they had the 7th pick and didn’t need to trade up. In 2012 they sat at #30 and we know what happened then.

        I would be very surprised if the 49ers don’t trade up again this year.

        1. Yeah, Walsh and Donahue did more of the trade-backs, one with success, the other not so much. I think they’re prepared to go up, down or stand pat depending on who falls where. They might be willing to go up 10-12 spots for one guy, but only 4-5 for another.
          I can’t imagine they’d go much past #20. Maybe #16? I think he’d jump a bit further for certain WRs this year than CBs.

        2. I agree that a trade up in first is more likely for Trent — if he does not have to give away the farm. But if they don’t move and there is a void at their spot then don’t be surprised if he surprises us.
          Trent’s MO — trade up in first round for a falling star so as not to give away too much or collect picks when no hot BPA at spot and offer cannot be refused.

    2. Richardson’s frame is similar to DeSean Jackson’s. Jackson held up pretty well as a punt returner.

      If Baalke pulls off a trade up in the first round, more power to him. I don’t see it this year.

      1. “If Baalke pulls off a trade up in the first round, more power to him. I don’t see it this year.”

        That is because you see a trade up as the other team doing the 49ers a favour. Between #15 and #29 there will likely be a lot of WRs and DBs taken. A team like the Bengals that are likely to look a different direction would probably see a move down 6 spots as low risk, with an upside of gaining another pick (likely a top 100 pick). If Clinton-Dix and Pryor are gone by #22, the Eagles would probably be interested too.

          1. The Eagles have Cary Williams, Brad Fletcher and Brandon Boykin returning, and added Nolan Carroll in FA. I don’t see them going CB in the first regardless of what Dane Brugler might think. They’ll be going safety, pass rusher or maybe WR (though they’ll probably wait for a WR).

            Most pundits have mentioned the Bengals have relatively minor draft needs this year. They could go a CB, DL, OL or LB. At CB they already have Leon Hall, Dre Kirkpatrick, Terence Newman and Adam Jones, so hardly a need area.

              1. Yeah, the Eagles safeties were terrible. They’ll take a safety round 1, unless Clinton-Dix and Pryor are gone. If they are, they’ll probably be open to trading back and taking Ward.

                Sure, the Bengals secondary is old. But they can take a CB in the 2nd or 3rd round. They don’t need to contribute right away. A pass rusher to replace Michael Johnson would make sense. Or an OL, or even a LB. Is Verrett better than the DL, LB or OL they could get at #30, + a 3rd round pick?

              2. I think those two teams would prefer quality over quantity when it comes to draft picks. If the Bengals like Kony Ealy, they’ll draft him at 24, not trade down to 30 and hope he’s still there.

  11. Grant, I do not believe Trent is going to pick a QB in the second round uless that player is the best player aviable. Colin is the franchise QB regardless and he will get paid his 18 to 20 million as long as he continues to play like he did last season. Here is my mock draft:


  12. Nice I have

    1. Kyle Fuller cb vt
    2. Donte Mcrief wr ole miss
    3. Jimmy Garapolo qb NIU
    4, Dominque Easley DE FL
    5. Robert Herron WR WYU
    6 Seantrell Henderson OL MIA
    7. Yawin Smallwood ILB CONN
    8. Loucheiz Purifoy CB FL
    9. Aaron colvin CB OU
    10. Johnathan Dowling ss WKU
    11. James Gayle olb OLB VT

      1. Love the first 4 picks, all players I have included in the mocks I have posted recently-also would love to get Colvin and red shirt him for a year along with another late rounder you didn’t list OG Spencer Long.Good job DMV!

    1. He looks a little bigger than his listed size of 5ft 9 1/8th inch. An alternative to Brandin Cooks if we miss him in the 1st.

  13. Whhaat?
    I was okay in this mock until you used the Niner’s 3rd pick to reach way down into a late round at best QB. David Fales has a much longer history of Ws (including over Wyoming) yet I would not consider taking him sooner than the fourth round.

    Did you just throw best available in the can. This is not a strong year for QBs. In other positions, however, this is considered a quality and / or deep draft. Prior to his pro day Smith was not expected to get drafted at all. Can a pro day really make that much difference. I have never put much stock in pro days because it is a set up for a most friendly and favorable environ.
    He did not get invited to the combine even with a mediocre class of QBs. Part of that was that he elected to come out in his junior year. But why choose to do that when your resume is still sketchy. Look at Fales in comparison. Hangs in there in his Senior year even with a weak supporting cast. Gets invite to senior bowl, has the flu, can’t practice much and then with little debate is the best QB there. Goes to the combine and does everything asked of him. Oh yea and sandwiched in between those two he won the QB competition in the All Stars Football Challenge. All of that was within a couple of weeks. Now he is working on NFL technique in prep for his upcoming pro day. That is what you call work ethic and football in the blood.
    Quick comparison of Fales to Smith:
    Smith is faster though combine vs pro day 40s can be misleading. I think arm strength is about equal. Smith has sloppy footwork, Fales, as a student of the game, has much better footwork. Fales has a long career of Ws, often carrying teams, often with last minute touch downs. Smith needed to play his senior year to show us that, otherwise not even close.

    You can reach way down for that QB gamble; I am going to go for best available and hope it is a CB.

  14. Oh yeah I mean for that spot im saying qb and ive seen fales in other micks in that spot I dont know much about this years qbsoqbsother than the ones projected in the first and Boyd of course. We migjt take boyd but it will ne in thrle 6th probably.

  15. Not sure if this was pointed out already but the 49ers pick #29 in the second not 30th, they have pick #61.

    Also do they really need to use #61 to draft Smith? Even as a sleeper that’s a pretty big reach it seems.

      1. I think you want to pick a QB at #61 for the weight of the message sent and you want to draft Smith but I don’t think those two philosophies mesh.

        1. Coffee,
          There is a message to be sent but I don’t want to use #61 to send it. I want the lower round bargain find to show and send that message in camp and preseason. Smith maybe that find to send that message but it will be from the 7th maybe a bit higher if there is a sleeper feeding frenzy.
          How ever, me thinks, Fales at 5th is more likely to send that message because he will work his tail off and will be a serious preseason competitor….. Even if he gets the flu.

        2. I don’t believe in these games. There are two messages that should be sent to the QB; you’re our guy or you’re on your way out. Which one does drafting a QB in the second round say? I’m not suggesting you don’t have competition or groom replacements but you also don’t use extremely valuable second round picks on bully tactics.

          1. If Kaepernick wants more money than he’s worth and the Niners don’t have a young potential starter on the bench, Kaepernick has all of the leverage.

            Gabbert doesn’t count. He’s a potential backup.

            1. Let’s go back to my first question. Do the 49ers really need to use #61 to draft Brett? What a great name btw, spelled wrong but it’s a strong manly name.

              1. If Jimmy Garoppolo is considered a second-round pick or a high first-round pick, Smith will rise big time.

              2. While I like Smith as an option for the Niners, I can’t see him being drafted before day 3. I also see no way the Niners use a second round pick on a player that likely won’t see the field for the duration of his rookie contract.

      2. I’m not an NFL scout, Im not related to one nor do I play one on television so all I can do is try and make an opinion based upon the work and thoughts of others. When I look at the work and thoughts of others who do this regularly and even professionally I see a consensus opinion that he wont be picked until the #130+ range. Picking a player projected to go in the 4th ish or later at the end of the second would be considered a reach by most people who pay attention to this kind of thing.

  16. Round 1 Pick 19 (MIA): Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State
    Round 1 Pick 30: Odell Beckham, WR, LSU
    Round 2 Pick 24: Ra’Shede Hageman, DT, Minnesota
    Round 2 Pick 29: Marcus Martin, C, USC

    I traded the 49ers 2015 1st Round pick, along with their 3rd Round (77th) and a 7th Round (26th)
    to move up with Miami at 19……

      1. Mayocks’ Top 5 WR’s

        1. Sammy Watkins, Clemson
        2. Mike Evans, Texas A&M
        3. Marqise Lee, USC
        4. Brandin Cooks, Oregon State
        t5. Kelvin Benjamin, Florida State
        t5. Jarvis Landry, LSU
        t5. Odell Beckham, LSU

        Mayocks’ Top 5 CB’s

        1. Darqueze Dennard, Michigan State
        2. Justin Gilbert, Oklahoma State
        3. Kyle Fuller, Virginia Tech
        4. Bradley Roby, Ohio State
        5. Jason Verrett, TC

        1. I think he’s got the CBs right.

          I’d buy Lee as the 3rd-best WR in the draft if I knew he was 100 percent healthy.

          Allen Robinson gets no love.

          Mayock is overrating Cooks and Landry. They’re good, but not that good.

          Interesting that Mayock is not a “Benjamin hater.”

          1. I think he’s dead on the cornerbacks. Robinson ran “slow”. He does hear what scouts are telling him from different teams too. I think the chances of a wide receiver like Cooks, Benjamin, or OBJr. being there at 30 might be slightly favorable over Fuller or Roby…..Just depends.

              1. True, but I think a speed element is what is needed to ignite the dynamite so to speak with this offense….

              2. Yeah, but Beckham and Cooks probably will be gone by 30. Richardson is the next best option, and he probably will be available at 56. He’s underrated.

              3. Agreed, if OBJr. and Cooks are gone, I’d probably take Hageman and then go with your boy Richarson….

              4. Just a note, has player rankings with their combine results and they have Benjamin ranked 2nd behind Watkins and ahead of Evans, Cooks, Beckham, and Lee. The interesting thing is that they have 4 mock drafts and the highest they have Benjamin going is 32nd. I demand more consistency!

              5. Hageman can play any position on the defensive line that Fangio asks him too, provided he listens to Tomsula…..Oh, and he’s got good knees.

              6. Could you please describe the similarities after studying the tape, that lead you to believe Hageman is “Balmer 2.0″?

              7. Mayock Top 5 DT

                1. Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh
                2. Timmy Jernigan, Florida State
                3. Louis Nix III, Notre Dame
                4. Ra’Shede Hageman, Minnesota
                5. Kelcy Quarles, South Carolina

              8. They don’t come much more physically imposing than Hageman, whose broad shoulders, long arms and trim waist have generated comparisons from J.J. Watt to John Henderson. Hageman’s physical tools are exciting and his rise from a tough childhood is inspirational, but best of all is his DL versatility. He remains a bit raw but possesses first round traits….

              9. Hageman is described as a freakish athlete that leaves scouts wanting more, and not in a good way. The same thing was said about Balmer before he was drafted.

              10. I’ll ask you again. Could you please describe the similarities after studying the tape, that lead you to believe Hageman is “Balmer 2.0″? Not just a quote from a scout…..

              11. Hageman plays a little high on the small sample I’ve seen. That’s easier to get away with in NCAA.
                Whatever happened to last year’s draft monster DL with the Germanic name? I don’t think I saw him at the Pro Bowl. (I’m lying, I don’t watch the ProBowl.)

              12. I don’t just go based on tape Razor. I take everything into account, including what myself and others might see. It raises a red flag when somebody says that they want to see more from a freakish 6’6″ DT.

              13. March 16, 2014 at 6:02 pm
                You want to replace Ray McDonald in the sub defenses?
                Next year, yes. Although in last name only.

        2. I’m reading from some sources that Beckham may be best suited in the slot. He’ll be good there, but in the view of some should be there rather than outside. If that view is widely shared, he could drop to late 1st. But, uh, V.Cruz has made himself useful.

    1. If they trade away their 2015 1st, then one of those 2nd rounders will be traded for a pick next year methinks.

      1. I think that’s the best approach. Go get your two studs at the two positions of need. Trade that late second if you want, but the talent next year at the bottom of the first will probably be a wash…..

    2. Razor,
      I am not that desperate at the CB position or that in love with a player to spend next years #1. Somebody is likely fall close enough to shorten the move up and lessen the sacrifice.
      If not I take best available or move down to stock pile in this draft that is more deep than star studded.

      1. Well Razor, that interesting. I wonder if Miami’s owner is that patient? To defer value a year?
        I thought about swapping Roby and Beckham, but I’d guess that whoever you took at 19, the other guy wouldn’t be there at 30. Heck, Bro! If I knew he’d be there I’d keep the 2015 1st and just grab Odell at 30 and go to bed happy on Day#1!

      2. There’s going to be a run on cornerbacks and/or wide receivers between 15-28. Which ever way it starts to go, you have to make a move to get your stud at each position. Your extra second round pick is essentially your 2015 first, because of the better talent depth in this years draft….Besides, you have plenty of picks and only a few spots available.

        1. Good points. I’m starting to look at these mostly K-Mart FA signings and think TB is filling in some middling talent. Martin means he doesn’t have to go OT in Rds 3-5, IMO. Cooks and Bethea take the pressure off of where he picks any . My point being, Trent could be giving himself the option of trading away some mid-rounds picks to move higher, instead of futures. It’s pay as you go and filling in quality. It all remains to be seen .

        2. Ok if the hand is forced then then for me it would take Justin Gilbert to cause me to cave.
          I see him as a Deon type — not the best tackler in the group but the potential to be a shut down corner. And that might be worth a first and third. mmmmh might be???

            1. Yeah guys, my guess is that’s what the FO is agonizing over right now. Establishing value. We can, and probably will argue endlessly about who is worth what, but it’s the Santa Clara conversations that count. I saw a mock where Evans fell to around #15; I’d be tempted.

              1. I don’t expect Gilbert, Evans, or Dennard to available at 15. You’re talking top 2 in each of their respective positions…..

              2. Well, OK. ; >)
                I guess there’s no way Crabtree would drop to…oh, wait…
                We’re talkin hypothetical here, and we’ll continue through May!

              3. Brotha, Mr. Crabs value might have been questioned due to his foot injury, but Oakland really embarrassed itself and Mr. Davis might have been sick with Old Timers Disease, like Reagan in his second term…..:>)

              4. Right Razor, but as Gilda Radner used to say:
                “It’s always something!”
                Seriously, guys rise or fall each year for some dubious, completely unpredictable reasons. The Cal WR last year, Crabs, heck; Brady. Joe Montana.

              5. True, I just don’t see any reason for those three to take a precipitous fall unless someone drops a dime on somebody…;>)

            2. By the way Razor, to you and the many Faithful outside NorCal, if you or any of y’all come out to check out the new stadium, I’d definitely make an effort to meet somewhere over a brewski and to shake hands. Just sayin.

              1. Thanks Brotha, I appreciate that type of friendly gesture. I’d love nothing better than to take you up on that if I ever get back out to California. If I did, I’d have the family in tow too……

            3. Actually I think there is a good chance Detroit grabs Gilbert at 10. So honestly the realistic opportunity only occurs if there is a big slide…..

    3. That better be a lock down pro bowl cb with all of those trades. B/c we made it to championship game with average CBs.

      1. He’d come in and lock down that slot position day one, unless you’re comfortable with Wright or Cook…..Roby would have been a top 10 pick last year.

    4. Pretty bold Razor, but I’d be floored if Baalke traded next year’s first rounder. That seems polar opposite to the way he operates.

  17. This obsession about Kap asking for to much is getting ridiculous. He’s gonna get paid, by the San Francisco 49ers. If we do draft a qb it will NOT be in the 1st 4 rounds. This is not Kap at age 35-39. It’s Kap at age 27. This is our qb rather you like it or not. We will not waste a draft pick on a qb in the early rounds. We have to many other areas to deal with. With that said, we will move up to take a guy nobody is talking about. The proof is in the “balkee way”. (Aldon,aj,reid) i still believe we get a dominant pass rusher.

      1. QB is important but in drafts in general and this one in particular few good ones are found in the high rounds. So I would say all areas or more accurately BPA with heavy emphasis on CB and a fast WR. I don’t see QB as BPA at 61.

      2. Grant… in my opinion, the other areas we would address before qb….. Cb,Saftey,Wr,De,Og,(iupati is a questionmark for next year. Someone will pay that man). TThat’s 5 picks riggt there before they even think of a qb. Unless one is available on a BPA draft board.

          1. Ray Mac has turbed into Manny Lawson. Was great until he got paid. Now it seems like he’s going through the motions, unless he was hurt. Bethea should shine in our system. Better tackler than whitner , but not a bigger hitter. Ill take the sure tackle over a big hit. But he’s only here short term. If these safteys are that good, we better get one while we can. And Looney has only proven he can get hurt. Unless playing time strengthens his bones

  18. That’s ridiculous to think 49ers will draft a QB so soon. They just traded for Gabert and with CK in a contract year you draft a QB high. Talk about controversy. But maybe that is what this blog post was about…well played grant, well played.

    1. Air force was one of just a few highlights and wins for Smith and Wyoming in last two years. Fales got the better of him when their respective teams met. Both played on weak teams in 2013.

  19. Someone sez…
    Kaepernick… no backup plan needed.

    Let’s see what folks are saying a year from now
    if we still have not celebrated SB win #6….

  20. This is a terrible and lazy mock Grant. Roby and Fuller both are candidates of being over-drafted, so there is a good chance that both will be gone by the time we pick at 30. The Richardson pick makes zero sense since we could pick up Herron in the third round. And why pick a QB that high when we could get one in the later rounds, let Kaep prove the naysayers wrong this season, and if all else fails then draft a quality QB in next year’s draft.

    1. So sorry you feel that way.

      By not signing Thurmond, Baalke pretty much has to draft a slot corner with his first pick. Otherwise, he’s rolling the dice on Eric Wright. Baalke usually doesn’t roll the dice like that.

      Richardson is much faster and more explosive than Herron.

      Draft a QB this year so he’s ready to take over as the starter next year in case Kaepernick and the 49ers can’t come to an agreement.

      1. I disagree Grant. Both Verrett and Joyner will be available in the second round, so they could grab their slot CB in that round.
        Richardson has small hands and is injury prone.
        It makes more sense drafting or signing a QB this season that could stand in if Kaep and the 49ers part ways (though the likelihood of that is small) while the team preps the QB from next year’s draft for the starting job.

        1. It doesn’t seem like Verrett will last past the top 40 picks.
          If Richardson had bigger hands he’d be a first-round pick. You don’t need giant hands to catch deep balls.

          1. Which is why the team should trade back with a team that misses out on the top 3 plus Carr and draft Verrett in the early second round. Pick up an extra pick or two and get a quality slot CB. I call that a win-win situation.

              1. The highest that I have seen Verrett being picked has been the mid 1st round range, but I think he will fall into the second round because of his torn labrum and short stature.

        1. Richardson is 6′ and Herron 5’9″. Richardson is rated higher according to my scouting reports. Got a second round grade on Richardson and 3-4 round grade on Herron…..

            1. Richardson: 4.40 38″ vertical 10’3″ broad 7.09 3-cone

              Herron: 4.48 351/2″ vertical 10’4″ broad 6.84 3-cone

              1. I wouldn’t touch him in the first round, even with his skill set. We already have one WR that can’t seem to make it through an entire season healthy sans one. No reason to add on the same exact problem.

            2. I agree Richardson is a better player. Herron looks pretty fast too though.

              My only concern with Richardson is that he is pretty one dimensional. That’s not an issue in and of itself, but in a year laced with WR talent, and with Crabtree off contract for 2015, I think they also need a WR to play more of the possession role. If they take Richardson and a guy like Latimer later on, that might work quite well.

              1. That’s a good point. A trade up definitely is the best-case scenario. The Jets might work. Or the Titans.

              2. I don’t think the Jets will trade down if Lee is still available, and the Titans need a CB (Gilbert?).

                Interesting fact about Janis: his arms are shorter than Beckham’s by 1/4″.

              3. Agree about the Jets. They probably will just take a WR at 18.

                What don’t the Titans need?

              4. The Titans are still kicking themselves for not taking Star Lotulelei when they had the chance.

          1. Trent likes blockers on the outside. A 5-9 guy, usually, isn’t that good at that.
            I was a 5-8 RB/WR. They put me outside mostly to threaten deep, but really to block. I blocked well. I got called for penalties too cuz I didn’t stop blocking. After a game a Ref said to me that he was a Deputy Sherrif, and that he’d either like to recruit me to his hometown team or arrest me; not sure, but he was smiling.

  21. Well Grant, for some reason Ben Howland was in love with senior PG Larry Drew II who was just awful. Howland deserved to be canned, several players transferred and the ones who didn’t were tired of his boring, no-fun offensive philosophy.
    UCLA vs Tulsa Friday…..Go Bruins!

    Kap aint goin nowhere bro….He’s going to make you proud one day.

    1. Kap wants to be paid like a great QB, but he’s merely good. Paying a good QB great-QB-money cripples the franchise.

      1. What ‘They’ say about FA is, don’t tell me what you’ve done for me, I’m paying you for what you’re going to do for me. With a young QB, that requires a leap of faith, but if it truly is a tennet of NFL business, then the whole concept of Win The Big One To Get Paid has a fallacy. Btw, I did notice the Flacco pageant, but that’s just one way to play it.

    2. Sorry Grant, I meant to reply at top of the page. What’s up with the blog? I have to login every post. Is it my computer or is something wrong with the site?

        1. Yes. If I leave my computer for more than a few minutes, I have to log back in; slightly annoying. I haven’t yet figured out what the timing is; maybe 15 minutes away?

    1. Depends upon how far he has to go. At the same spot, I’d take Evans. Gilbert would seem to be a lot more in reach.

    2. I would rather trade up for Gilbert just because the draft looks a little deeper at WR. What is most important in my opinion is getting a high quality player at each position, CB and WR. Lots of draft picks at Baalkes disposal to use to move around. It can be done. Gotta have one quality player at each position.

      1. Only three cornerbacks with world class speed and a first round grade. Gilbert/Roby/Verrett

        Verrett is similar to what they have in Morris, and he comes with durability concerns.

      1. You’d have to get him in the top 5, and that’s going to cost you both 2nd Rounders plus this years and next years 1st Rounders…..

    3. Depends on what Mock you look at, but both Evans and Gilbert seem to be going awfully high (10-12) for the Niners to get to. I think a more realistic trade-up would be in the 20-25 range which is more likely Fuller/Gilbert/Beckam/Benjamin range, correct? An interesting question would be if Dennard falls below 15 do they try and go get him?

        1. Lots of Mocks have the Lions taking Gilbert at 10. But I agree Dennard doesn’t fall to far after that. I think Gilbert and Dennard are both likely beyond Trent’s “reach” this year. (yes that was supposed to be a long-arm joke, emphasis on supposed)

        2. Ok then if true, Gilbert falls. I am good with that. Then Steelers at 15, or Cowboys at 16 or Eagles at 21…..? 49ers jumping above 21 sounds like a reasonable possibility.

    4. Both would be great. This year, the 49ers probably have a bigger need at the CB position. I suppose it depends on how much faith the coaching staff has with Cook at CB. I think Evans has more talent, but Gilbert fills a more urgent need. Evans would only be a #3 WR this year, but he could be #1 by next year.

  22. Grant,

    If we decide to trade up i would go for Mike Evans. I am not a big fan of Gilbert despite his physical attributes. I would take Verrett or Fuller over Gilbert!

    To my opinion the top CB in this draft:

    1 Verrett
    2 Fuller
    3 Gains
    4 Gilbert
    5 Joyner
    6 Desire
    7 Watkins

    Top WR:

    1 Mike Evans
    2 Odell Beckham
    3 Allen Robinson
    4 Davante Adams
    5 Paul Richardson
    6 Monte Moncrief
    7 Jared Jbb
    8 Herron

      1. I’m with you, MidWest ..but
        we could probably snag him at 2b.. and
        grab the BPA – CB at #30

        I don’t like the idea of giving up our 2015 -1st rounder
        for anyone …
        This draft is too deep for our needs to do that

    1. Chicago – What’s up bro?? Nice list.
      I’m hoping for Gilbert or Verrett for CB’s and Evans, Beckham or Moncrief for WR’s.
      Btw, are you voice posting on your smart phone? Lol Monte (Donte) Moncrief……I remember as a kid a game show host on “lets make a deal” name Monte Hall.

    2. If the rest of the league agrees with you then Justin Gilbert has a great chance of falling to 30. Here’s hoping your CB list is spot on.

        1. If Verrett were two inches taller he’d be the #1 rated CB in the draft imo. I’d have no problem taking him at #30. His athleticism more than makes up for his height deficiencies.

          1. While I completely agree that if he was 2″ taller he’d be up there with Dennard and Gilbert in the conversation for first CB off the board, I have to disagree he can more than make up for it with his athleticism. I think he will be good, but I also think he will struggle some in matchups with bigger WRs. If they take Verrett I’ll be happy with it, but I would be surprised.

            1. So would I given they have similar sized corners in Morris and Brock….Furthermore, look at the teams trash they picked up in Cook for a clue as to what they prefer.

              1. Since Baalke has been in charge they have drafted or signed only 2 CBs under 5’11″ (that I can recall) – Brock and Morris. Both were UDFAs. Both of those guys are 5’10″.

                Taking a guy that is 5’9″ with their first pick would be a massive deviation from the norm.

              2. Haha, yes, he’s been intentionally taking big CBs in previous years just so he can get Verrett for a song in this years draft :-)

              3. I recall in 2012 there was a lot of talk about how we needed a CB, a guy that play the slot, and Janoris Jenkins should be the pick (20-20 hindsight we did indeed take the wrong Jenkins). The 49ers didn’t take a CB at all.

                In 2013 there was plenty of noise the 49ers needed a smaller CB to play the slot to “combat Harvin”. Guys like Mathieu, Alford or Webb were touted as must have’s. The 49ers took the 6’0″ Marcus Cooper in the 7th.

                I’m not falling for the idea of needing to take a smaller CB to play the slot again. The 49ers have shown a strong preference for bigger CBs in the slot. And it makes some sense – they want their slot CB to be able to play the run when needed, so he needs to have almost safety size.

              4. It makes a whole lot of sense when you play in the west with a power running possee featuring Lynch….

              5. There’s a major difference between Verrett and those two though Scooter, and that is their type of character. Verrett was a high character team leader (the type that Baalke drafts) while Jenkins and Mathieu had very big questions in regards to their character.

              6. What about Alford, Webb, McFadden or Ryan last year? What about the FA CBs they could have picked up in the past few years? If they wanted a small slot CB they could have one by now. They have consciously avoided them in preference for bigger slot CBs. It isn’t a coincidence.

              7. There were other key needs and the secondary wasn’t as depleted at that time as it is now Scooter.

              8. Like Scooter pointed out, it would be a massive deviation in philosophy if Baalke targeted Verrett….

              9. Not true. Taking Jenkins was a deviation of what he normally did. Taking Verrett would be the same strategy that he used every other time.

              10. All three of the Florida corners that Baalke was scouting today at their Pro Day were all at least 5’11″.

              11. “Taking Jenkins was a deviation of what he normally did.”

                Um, how? Jenkins fits right in with the type of WR Baalke has gone for. Manningham, Patton, Johnson, Williams. Baalke has no problems going for smaller WRs.

                “Taking Verrett would be the same strategy that he used every other time.”

                Midwest, you are coming up with plenty of excuses to try and support why your man Verrett will be the pick, to the point of now saying it wouldn’t even be a departure from Baalke’s strategy. Verrett is very much against the philosophy of big CBs that Baalke has looked for since he’s been in charge.

                I’m not saying Verrett won’t be taken by the 49ers. But it would be against their recent trend and would surprise me.

              12. Nice try Scooter, but the ones making up excuses are those against drafting Verrett. If Baalke is so much for the big CBs, then why did the team extend Brock and make him the starter?

                Um, how? Jenkins fits right in with the type of WR Baalke has gone for. Manningham, Patton, Johnson, Williams.

                Incorrect. Baalke has gone after high character players in the draft and bargain deals in free agency. The only two times that he deviated from that was when drafted Anthony Davis (which has worked out) and A.J. Jenkins ( which didn’t work out).

                I’m not saying the should go all in on Verrett. My belief is that he will fall into the second round and be a steal, but I would also be very comfortable with the team taking him at 30. Any spot higher than that would be classified a reach to me.

              13. “Nice try Scooter, but the ones making up excuses are those against drafting Verrett.”

                Yes MidWest, that is exactly what I am doing, making up a bunch of excuses to convince myself that Baalke won’t take a player I rate highly. :-P

                I’d be happy if you and rocket are right, and they sit pat and take Verrett, or better yet move back and get him. I think he’ll be a good player. I just don’t see Baalke sitting pat though when there are other CBs that fit what has been the 49ers preferred fit.

                I went back to the archives and found this from Matt Barrows:


                “Fangio and the 49ers prefer to have bigger cornerbacks in the nickel position because they play so close to the trenches and must be able to play a linebacker-like role as well as that of cornerback.”

                Sounds eerily similar to what I said earlier in the thread…

              14. Yes MidWest, that is exactly what I am doing, making up a bunch of excuses to convince myself that Baalke won’t take a player I rate highly. :-P

                Again Scooter, I never said that it was you. The ones who have been doing so know who they are.

                That’s a nice article Scooter. He also prefers players with long arms, but he has been willing to abandon both philosophies if he can find a steal during the draft, like Patton for instance.

          2. FWIW, I’m not suggesting they take Verrett to make him strictly a slot CB. I also think there are other good CB’s worth taking as well. My point is simply that his height is the only negative you can find on this guy and he makes up for that with his speed and jumping ability.

            Would it be a change from what Baalke has drafted previously? I suppose, but let’s also keep in mind Baalke hasn’t drafted many CB’s, and none with a pick higher than the 3rd round, so we hardly have a pattern on what he will do all the time.

            I’m glad to see you’ve come around on Roby Scooter.

            1. It isn’t just the guys they’ve drafted rocket. Look at the FA CBs they’ve signed. Rogers, Asomugha, Cook, Wright, Cox. All 5’11″ or above.

              I still think Roby should be an early 2nd rounder, but he fits what Baalke tends to look for nicely and they’ve left themselves in a position where they should probably reach a little to get the guy that fits, rather than risk losing him to another team.

              1. Look at the FA CBs they’ve signed. Rogers, Asomugha, Cook, Wright, Cox. All 5’11″ or above.

                That only supports that Baalke goes bargain hunting and isn’t afraid of reclamation projects Scooter.

              2. Yes, bargain hunting and seeking reclamation projects for CBs 5’11″ and above, because that is the profile he prefers at CB. Are you suggesting there were no bargains or reclamation projects they could have gotten below 5’11″?

            2. I hear you Scooter and you are right, more often than not they have gone for the taller option, but they made Brock a starter and Morris was kept over Cooper last year so there is some instances of it going the other way. More than anything, I’m basing this one on the individual player in Verrett. I think he’s so good they would overlook the two inches.

              Agree with you on Roby too. I think he’s ideal for what they need, but he also comes with a risk due to the lack of focus at times which pushes him into round two. That’s one where you count on Donatell to set him straight and playing up to that incredible physical talent he has..

              1. “But they made Brock a starter”. Only after they had given Asomugha a go, and only after he got injured. They had seen Brock for 3 years and still went looking for something else at that spot, and it wasn’t until Brock got a chance through injury and proved he was starting material that they rewarded him.

                “Morris was kept over Cooper last year.” No, he wasn’t. Both were let go, Cooper got signed off waivers, Morris didn’t.

              2. Robys’ lack of focus was a product of NFL remorse. I believe he stayed in school for his parents, and during the year had regrets regarding his decision. I have no concerns that his focus will be like a laser beam in the NFL….

              3. Scooter,

                Correct on Cooper. I had a brain cramp when I posted that. As I said I do agree that Baalke prefers the bigger CB’s, but Verrett is so good in every other area that I think he would buck the trend if he is there and others are off the board.


                Could be and it wouldn’t be unprecedented: see Clowney, Jadaveon. Roby has so much natural talent I just hope he’s not a guy who thinks he doesn’t have to put the work in because of it.

  23. I agree with grant that they will draft a QB pretty high (if available). The FA picks are an indication of what the team is looking for. They got the ‘veterans’ to help the rookies and in case the rookies can’t deliver. Har-Har likes players to be competitive. I think he got Gabbert for the potential, similar numbers as Kap in the combine and for his NFL experience. A rookie will need a lot of help, Gabbert needs less if he lives up to his potential. I also think that this might be the year that Kap has to deliver in the red zone. JH wants to win and Kap has missed when it mattered most. Three strikes and your OUT.

  24. Grant – I looked up 49ers front office personnel and some dude name Matt Malaspina is Director of College Scouting.
    Before the draft can you please gather some info on what Malapina’s specific duties are? For example, does he deligate regional scouts to do background checks on draft eligible college players or does he do it himself? Do they talk to friends and relatives of these players for character information? What separates his duties from a regional scout? Does he meet directly with York and or Baalke and Harbaugh? What’s his salary? Anything would be appreciated. Hopefully I’m not the only one that’s curious what these scouts do. Seems like an awesome job.
    Maybe Lowell knows what these scouts jobs consist of? Thanks!

  25. Wow! This mock sucks. Roby is athletic, but had off field issues and did not perform up to his potential this year. Richardson is so small that he will have a hard time showing his skills if he can’t even get off the line of scrimmage. I like Smith, but not in the top 64 picks. He will be around in the 3rd or 4th round.

  26. It’s obvious Grant is a mediocre writer. There are too many good writers out there covering the 49ers, so Grant tries to be different and create these click-bate blogs/articles…
    There’s no point arguing with Grant, because it’s a waste of time.
    I’m going to read other more credible and quality articles by other journalists.

  27. Grant I’m glad you’re not our GM! Listen either Baalke is going to give an arm or a leg maybe both for mike Evans in the top 10. Or kelvin banjamin in the middle of the first. In my opinion I would trade up for either one no higher than #18. If we stand pat at #30, I would take Brandin Cooks barring if Evans or Benjamin isn’t there (most likely not). If neither player is there I would trade down and possibly get an extra first rounder next year. But I would trade down. Verrett sux and would get burnt. Wouldn’t waste a pick on him til second round.

  28. 1) Trade up and take CB-Gilbert-Shut down corner
    2) SS-Duanne Buchanon
    3) WR-Jordan Mathews-6’3, 225 LbS, 4.4-40 yard
    4) WR-Montavious Bryant-6’5″, 225 LBS, 4.4-40 yard
    5) C-Bryan Stork
    6) QB Logan Thomas

    1. Gilbert would be a great pick, but I think he may be out of the 49ers reach. I like your list of draft choices – makes sense.

  29. Never like taking a WR in the first round. Too many of them flame out and there are almost always ones in rounds 2,3 and later who make it big. I’m 63, so I remember Gene Washington and Jerry Rice being great first round picks ….. two in 45 years …. too many stiff at WR picked in the first round. I’d go with pass rushers, defensive backs and if you see an OL or LB you think is great, grab him. Having said that, we do need to draft a really good young WR somewhere.

  30. 49ers are going d-line or o-line with the first pick. The only other option is WR and thats only if one of the guys the 49ers covet falls to them. I’m thinking if Cooks or Benjamin falls they will take them. I don’t see Baalke moving up at all. It’s supposedly a deep draft in need areas so I see the 9ers staying put. Also, why don’t I see any mocks with LB’s in the top 3 rounds for the 9ers? This is a need area on the team. With Bowman out, the 9ers need more quality LB’s.

    1. They don’t have roster spots for all the picks they have. That alone says they are going to package picks to move up. At least to me it does. They did nothing spectacular in free agency which just about means they have to make a splash in the draft.

        1. The fan in me hopes we are able to get something to work out with the Raiders. The more sensible side says the Cowboys or the Steelers are more viable trade partners.

            1. The lead up to the draft is always full of misinformation, but this quote was published on March 2:

              “I’ve been doing this for 30 years, and this is the deepest draft that I’ve ever seen,” Steelers GM Kevin Colbert said. “I can’t see a position where there isn’t more depth than there has ever been.”

              Why wouldn’t he trade down?

            2. I agree with SactoGreg. There will be a number of teams looking to trade down due to the talent available into day 3. That is why I wouldn’t trade up if I were the Niners. Stay where you are, or trade out of the first altogether to get a high pick in 2015. They will get some very good talent with their 5 picks in the first 3 rounds.

              1. They have talent — 8-8 teams — and big money invested in older QBs. I think those teams would take BPA.

    2. “why don’t I see any mocks with LB’s in the top 3 rounds for the 9ers?”

      I believe the thought process there is that they already have 4 ILB’s and Skuta has the ability to play both inside and out.

      1. Agree. I think that is the thought process but it’s misguided. The 49ers have 4 ILB’s but only one NFL starter quality ILB that will be able to play in 2014. They need an ILB in the draft or via FA.

        1. I think Wilhoite will do well, kind of like Grant in 2011 when Willis went down.

          I do agree they should be looking there in the draft. Another young guy who can develop for a year or two.

        2. They have Bowman likely coming back around midseason. Until then they have Wilhoite, Moody and Skuta if needed. No need to spend a high pick on an ILB. Taking one on day 3 would make some sense though.

          1. I wouldn’t count on Bowman at all in 2014. He may be cleared to play but I just don’t see him contributing anything until 2015. I like Wilhoite, Skuta, and Moody but let’s be honest – they are journeymen at best. They might be able to spot start but we’re talking about a full year here. Bowman was one of the best defensive players in football for the past 2 years. His level of play likely masked some of the deterioration in Willis’ play. Willis has declined over the past 2 years and it’s noticeable. He’s still a very good player but Bowman was clearly better. Perhaps we don’t need an ILB in Round 1 or Round 2 but it should be on the radar for round 3.

            1. I disagree with you on Willis. His job description changed due to Bowman. He is now more of a coverage player, but will likely resume his old role before Bowman arrived until Bowman is able to come back.

              They feel Bowman should be ok by midseason so I have no reason to believe that he won’t. If he has a setback and is gone for the season, then they have options. I don’t see how you come up with Journeymen designations for these guys when Wilhoite played very well in place of Willis last year, and Moody and Skuta really haven’t had a shot yet. The team knows the skill set of these players and obviously like what they have. If a really good prospect is sitting there in round 3 as BPA, then I could see it possibly, but why use a high pick on a player that will be relegated to a depth role behind two of the best ILB’s in the game?

              1. I like your optimism rocket but Willis has fallen off. Still very good, as I said, but his play has declined. He doesn’t shed blocks as well as he used to and he’s lost a step or two. That’s just what happens to players as they get older. As much as I may wish it, Bowman may never return to his former level of play after that catastrophic injury. I do call the 3 backups journeymen level because that is the truth. I like them as players but they are career backups.

              2. It will be very interesting to see what Fangio does without Bowman. When Willis was out of the Colts game, Fangio stayed with his 2 ILB in nickel, which he does more that any other team in the league. It was never announced over the TV, but I’m pretty sure Wilhoite was the guy called for holding on that crucial third down. Until Bowman is back to full strength, Fangio had better come up with someone other than Wilhoite to play in the nickel package.

                I also agree 100% regarding Willis. As long as he’s healthy I expect a serious bounceback season as the featured ILB.

              3. Houston,

                We’ll have to agree to disagree because I haven’t seen a drop off; just a different role since Bowman came on. He’s also 29 years old; not 35.

                We are in 2014. Knee surgeries have progressed to the point that not only do players come back, but they come back quickly. I have no idea when Bowman will be back, but the team believes he will be back by midseason. Any predictions on how Bowman performs when he does come back are a waste of time until we see it.

                Again I’m also not sure how you form an opinion that the backups are journeymen when you haven’t seen Moody or Skuta play ILB in this defense and Wilhoite played very well when he had to replace Willis.

  31. Now we here in Ninerland have had our fair share of media hoopla and bloviating over non-stories. Saw some fussing on PFT about how Desean Jackson is upset over his status with the Eagles. As you read the story, nobody on the Eagles, not even an unnamed source, has said a word. The team is only mentioned to point out they didn’t say anything about him, didn’t give him any strokes publicly.
    OK. Jackson’s side? Nothin’. He didn’t say anything, nobody talked to him about it. The ‘story’ is attributed to an unnamed source ‘close to DeSean’ who says he’s concerned about his future.
    This is NOT a story, OK? What if some guy says to you, “Hey, my brother in law works with a guy who is 1st cousins with DeSean’s best friend’s sister, and she said….”
    Child, Please!

    1. BT ..
      I ran into a guy at the store, who actually
      saw him board a plane once ! .. does that count ?

      to that “youngster” .. kezar mike ..
      you wouldn’t happen to know (offhand) which round
      “Alley-Oop” was taken ?

  32. Brett Smith in the 2nd round? I’m from Wyoming and have watched him play and I can’t believe the guy will be drafted, certainly not in the 2nd round. I’ve watched him live and no…he is not a 2nd rounder…not even close. Paul Richardson will get mugged all over the field considering his build (172 lbs) – I think that would be another 49er disaster WR pick. I can see Roby…maybe. I think Roby will be available with a 2nd round pick. I think there is a drop off in talent after the top 2 CBs in this draft and then a whole bunch of CBs at the same level – deep position, however.

    I think the 49ers will go WR in the 1st round (may trade up), a CB, and SS. If an opportunity would present itself to get Mike Evans, I think the 49ers will go get him. I think Benjamin, Beckham, Robinson, Matthews, and Landry will all be within the 49ers reach and probably at pick # 30. Strong Safeties Bucannon, Loston, or Dixon will all be available to the 49ers at their current draft positions in the 2nd round or beyond.

    1. Richardson weighed 175 at the Combine. DeSean Jackson weighed 169 at the Combine. Richardson has long arms and is extremely fast.

      1. I really like Richardson and would feel OK with drafting him late in the 2nd. His size does not bother me much but I have to wonder what Baalke thinks about him. Small hands. Under 9 inches at the combine. Other under 6ft receivers like Beckham, Lee, Cooks, Herron, Ellington, all have the hand size that Baalke seems to covet in WR’s.

        I gotta think that Richardson might not be on Baalke’s board.

        1. Did not mean to suggest that Richardson is under 6 feet. Just wanted to compare some smaller WR’s hand size to his.

      2. I agree, but the Eagles haven’t won the Super Bowl with Jackson either. Also, The NFC West is different than the NFC East. The 49ers play Seattle twice a year and need WRs that can beat the jam at the line. Richardson would suffer the same fate as A.J. Jenkins and for the same reason.

  33. I know a lot of people on this board feel we didn’t need much because our roster is so amazing. But we’ve now put immense pressure on our draft. And the truth is, despite how many picks we have, we’re still picking at the bottom of the first round. And we have two picks at the bottom of the second round. Those are far from slam dunk slots (though no slot is a slam dunk).

    2 CORNERS.
    By my count we have NO above-average starting corners. T. Brock is average at best, and I always thought we saw him as a nickel guy, not our #1, which is what he’ll have to be this season. So at some point we’ll need two corners who can contribute right away. Hard to bank on two rookies to do that, but we may have to.

    1 SAFETY.
    Bethea is a stopgap. Which means we need a baller to develop behind him. I’m a huge fan of Terrance Brooks–but it seems we don’t care about coverage ability out of that position as much as I’d like to see.

    1 RB
    With explosive speed who can also run inside. We have a bunch of “almost” guys in the backfield. As Grant has pointed out, Gore is slowing down. Well the man should. Look how many carries he has, how many injuries he’s overcome. He’s likely to be even a little slower this year. Hunter isn’t quite enough of anything to make an impact. LMJ had better get on HGH, oxygen, and anything else we can find the dude, because he routinely disappoints. And Lattimore, if he can come back from his injuries, is a solid but somewhat upright straight-line guy who runs more people over than he makes miss.

    1 WR
    With enough speed to force opposing safeties off the line a little. This guy can’t just have speed, though–he has to be able to escape the jam and, not just get downfield, but make plays downfield.

    1 CENTER
    Who is super athletic. Interior speed kills us because Iupati and Boone are power guys. It would be great acquire a superior athlete at center to make up for that. Unfortunately, we may have to hope Kilgore is enough. I think he’s okay, but interior speed will now still hurt us.

    Aldon can’t do it alone. Brooks is great at a lot of things, but his pass rush is fairly average for a 3-4 guy. And can we really count on Cowboy and McDonald, at their ages, to apply enough pressure? This has been a concern for us. Tank hopefully will help–but we still need a big-time pass rusher inside at some point.

    1 QB
    Grant and many of you have said it. I agree. We don’t know which Kaep will show up this season. I won’t even recap all of your thoughts, which are all extremely valid. Bottom line is… we really need a prospect who has Super Bowl-level intangibles to develop behind Kaep, in case he’s not the one.

    So with the Broncos, Pats, Hawks and Saints (and maybe a little Cardinals) in our way, we’re going to have to hit some major league home runs in this year’s draft. So, Baalke… you put our eggs in this basket. Fine. With four major players slated to hit FA next year–and with one of them wanting $18+ mil a season–the time to win may really be now. So you have to draft guys with the ability to contribute right away, and the talent to come through in the biggest moments on the biggest stage.

    Go Niners!

    1. Totally agree with you about RB’s. A very underrated and overlooked need. I place it right behind CB and WR.

      Gore has passed the dreaded 30 year old mark and has also passed the dreaded 2000 carry mark. Love the guy, don’t want to put him out to pasture but…

      Lattimore is coming off of two major knee injurers and surgeries. He’s a tremendous prospect but is a question mark right now 7 weeks before the draft.

      Anthony Dixon. Gone.

      Kendall Hunter is a nice little spot player not an every down back.

      LMJ is LMJ. No need to say more.

      We play in a physical smash mouth conference where you have to be able to run the ball and must have a stable of running backs and we have a head coach who channels Bo Schembechler and 4 yards and a cloud of dust and win games with field goals not touchdowns. And thats a lot of ands.

      Running Back is a need.

    2. Sully my response…

      1 CB – first two rounds unless you see a value late, a sleeper so to speak. 2 CB perhaps if another is selected late but we may not have money or roster spots for everyone… I’m more concerned then a lot on this blog about Cully… I would assume he will not be back to form and perhaps can re-injure

      1 CB/S – I’d argue the safety we got is more then a stop gap and is expected to p[lay 2-4 years. My comment of CB/S is it would be nice if we grab a flex player that can play CB but has S experience. Kind of like Cully.

      1 RB – I’m pretty much done with LMJ… hey wouldn’t it be cool if DeAnthony Thomas runs bad again at his prod day (not sure when that is)… I would like to grab him in the third. The dude can handle kick-offs and punts out the gate.

      1 WR – I say hedge our bets and take 2-3 in this draft. 2 in rounds 1-4… if value if there for a third WR take him and have him compete.

      *** Additional Comments about WR***
      I agree with the speed factor or the ability to take the top off the D and stress the opponents. HOWEVER, I have been thinking about CK’s slow delivery or lack of touch… he needs to fix this. But maybe we trade up for Evans or any WR that attacks the ball at the point and is a huge target. CK can throw fast balls to the back shoulder or skinny posts all day to this type pf WR.

      1 C – sure. Maybe G/C type. I’;m concerned with signing Iupati… If one had to pick Crabs or Iupati… I’m thinking Crabs is the priority hands down. We get another G. Love Crabs and CK’s synergy.

      1 Interior pass rusher – TOTALLY AGREE!!! I think we need to focus on the line and OLB all the time. Pass rush WINS championships… NOT CBs. Revis, Sherman… these are anomaly-type of players… When our pass rush weekend the last two years, the secondary was exposed. It is a balance, but I think we need to always bolster the front seven to stay competitive.

      1 QB – I don’t know, I’m indifferent. Only thing I would say is if we select a JH prodigy then we need to keep him on. Not do a B J Daniels thing. I would be surprised if they take a QB high.

      Go Niners!!!

      1. Deanthony Thomas ran under 4.4 at his pro day but I don’t put much faith in pro day times. He is quick and fast though. Much faster than his combine time would indicate.

        1. Also to years ago he ran a lot of routes out of the slot or motioned a lot and ended up in that minus 5 to plus 5 yard range. Whether a screen, or quick out, drag or hitch.

          Point being, there is a lot potential to turn him into a smaller,yet quicker Harvin.

          I think someone who has the picks should reach for a dynamic playmaker like him. I’d like that to be the Niners.

    3. Sully,

      Most of these areas were going to be draft needs FA or not. If they didn’t feel Brock and Culliver were up to the challenge, don’t you think they would have gone hard after a CB in FA? These guys aren’t stupid and know what they have which is why they didn’t go out and overspend on FA’s. The teams that go hog wild in FA overpay for lesser talent. In Denver’s case they are going all in with trying to win a SB before Manning hangs them up, but the additions they’ve made are hardly guarantees they’ll achieve it. They’ve added a couple of good players but as we see time and time again, the teams that win FA don’t win on the field.

      The consensus top 2 teams in the NFL at the end of the season were Seattle and SF. Neither team has done much of anything in FA. What does that tell you?

      1. Rocket, you and I can go back and forth on this all day. The Seahawks were very aggressive last year in outside acquisitions–Bennett, Avril, Harvin–but not so much this year. The Broncos added guys like Manning and Welker in FA even before this year. The Saints got Brees in FA a while ago, and almost every year have been aggressive in FA, especially on the defensive side. The Pats weren’t so aggressive last year in FA, but this year they were. Wouldn’t you say those are our most fierce competitors? What does that tell you?

        1. Sully,

          They traded for Harvin. Avril and Bennett were signed to below market deals. They weren’t aggressive and didn’t overpay. They waited and got deals. That is what the Niners are doing and the Seahawks are doing again. I have not seen anything that the Pats or Broncos has done that gives me reason to believe they can beat the Niners or Seahawks.

          I know you wanted them to pay for Revis or Byrd, but by doing that they wouldn’t have any cap room left and would be giving up depth for one player,

          Here is what I want you to think about:

          Culliver was a starter before his injury. He was the 3rd CB and played a lot his first two years. This isn’t a case of bringing in somebody we don’t know anything about. Brock started for most of last season and played very well, essentially taking Brown’s spot. So what we are left with is two guys who have started and played pretty well with the one missing piece being a replacement for Rogers as the slot CB. They will draft somebody for that spot or bring in a FA at a later time. This team is not far off from where it was in the secondary last year and may be better after the draft.

          Don’t overreact to FA. Signing big ticket FA’s rarely results in winning. It’s the bargains and the draft where you make your hay.

          1. Rocket, I can’t believe you’re not getting what I’m saying. It doesn’t have to be an ultra-expensive FA signing. It just has to be an IMPACT signing, which Avril and Bennett were. We haven’t signed an impact guy in FA for a very long time. And it’s going to hurt us. And I’m sure you have a thousand reasons to keep protecting your view that the Niners’ FO and strategy is untouchable. And I can’t compete with your resolve on that. Culliver sucked in the Super Bowl and now he’s recovering from an ACL. T. Brock is average at best. Bethea is below-average. Gabbert stinks. Martin is a distraction and one of the softest blockers I’ve ever seen. Wright was a healthy scratch in our biggest game of the year. Dahl sucked. McCoy sucked. I can’t have this conversation anymore. I’m no longer getting into what we haven’t done, it’s my final post on this subject.

            1. Sully,

              Relax, we are just talking some ball here. I get what you are saying. I just don’t agree with it. What FA was out there that you feel was going to make an impact that wasn’t going to cost a lot? The guys you mentioned earlier this week (Revis and Byrd) were the highest priced guys out there, so who else do you think they missed on that was going to make an impact here without blowing up their cap space?

              Brock is more than average or they wouldn’t have given him a starting role and he wouldn’t have excelled in it the way he did. Culliver was pretty good overall the SB notwithstanding. He’s also a young player who was still being coached on how to play the position. He has great size and athleticism and that took him a long way before he got injured.

              I’m also not saying that signing FA’s is bad. I’m simply pointing out that this team doesn’t get into the high stakes FA game. They use FA to improve on what they have if it’s there and don’t overpay for middling players or ones near the end of their career. I’m not sure how you can question it considering how successful they’ve been in the past 3 years.

              One other thing to keep in mind: They are working on an extension with Kap that will involve needing more cap room. Teams also get to move any leftover cap room into the following year which could be important with all the FA’s they will have next season. There are a lot of things in play here.

              1. ‘They are working on an extension for Kap…..’
                Not if you take the word of some on here, Rocket. CK is skating on thin ice and they might have to move on to, oh, I dunno, any old 7th Rounder QB I guess. You get 3 shots, then Ejection Seat, LOL.

              2. rocket:

                You clearly don’t get it. The 49ers are doomed! DOOMED!!! Look at all the reasonably-priced IMPACT players that were available in free agency this year. The 49ers didn’t sign any of them. As soon as I can think of their names, I’ll give them to you.

                The team has a long track record of failing to sign big name IMPACT players in FA. Sure Anquan Boldin was an IMPACT player last year, but he doesn’t count because he wasn’t a FA signing; the 49ers traded for him. And the signings of Donte Whitner and Carlos Rogers? Since I’ve already concluded that the 49ers haven’t signed any IMPACT FAs, those two can’t possibly be impact players. I mean IMPACT players. Plus, they were signed in 2011, and that was THREE years ago, which is almost like another decade, if you think about it.

                And while Iupati, Bowman, Aldon Smith, Kaepernick, and Reid might be considered imp IMPACT players, they don’t count because they were drafted, not signed as FAs. Every knows that the real impact players are the FA IMPACT players.

                And don’t you dare bring up Tank Carradine and Marcus Lattimore. In addition to being mere draftees, they’re both seriously injured, one-legged players. I’m pretty sure the NFL won’t let them play on prosthetic legs, so they’ve got no chance of becoming IMPACT players. They’re basically nothing more than complete wastes of money. So much for draft picks being the cost efficient way to stock a team with talent.

                Let’s face it, the 49ers’ failure to be aggressive in the FA market is the reason why the team failed to win the Super Bowl each of the past three years. And it’s the reason why the current roster is so devoid of talent. It’s pitiful, I tell you, just pitiful.

              3. Just blowing off some steam. I get tired of all the whining about Baalke’s failure to make a splash in FA.

    4. “I’m a huge fan of Terrance Brooks–but it seems we don’t care about coverage ability out of that position as much as I’d like to see”

      You do realise Bethea is known as being very good in coverage, right? Yes, his PFF rank was down last year, but one stat that seems to keep being overlooked is that teams only threw his way 33 times all year – twice a game. That’s it. That doesn’t happen to guys that can’t cover.

  34. I’m not big into the QB discussion this draft but it appears that Bridgewater left people wanting at his pro day.

  35. I do know one thing. It appears as though other teams have gotten better through free agency and we have not. We clearly have holes in our secondary and I don’t like the thought of us relying on rookies to help this team. I Cleary feel like there were so mm en small moves we could have made in free agency to help but we have not done so. I hate that we wait for guys who are desperate to make any moves in free agency. We’ll see what happens with this draft. I don’t have the greatest confidence in this front office right now. Especially with the draft. A.J. Jenkins anyone?

    1. don’t be a mud-in-the-stick, Jordo …

      Free Agency (this year) wasn’t the place to make
      the big splash you were lookin’ for … especially
      considering the cap

      The Niners did fine so far .. and with the talent this
      draft promises .. I think we’ll be ok come this season

      all arrows up !

    2. Jordo,
      Reality is we do not have cap room to acquire FAs this year. Sure some cap relieaf is coming in June but we have little to make a play. Maybe 3 MM to bring someone on a one year.

    3. Jordan,

      Read my response just above. FA is not where you make your team a winner and it’s also not over yet as far as I can tell.

  36. How do you guys feel about trading up for Aaron Donald the way we did last year for Reid? I’m thinking about ways the defense can be its most dominant, and I recall the Giants’ last two Super Bowl wins being about their great D-Line having so much talent, O-lines couldn’t match up. It helped them overcome all the rest of their weaknesses–in their case both at linebacker and in the secondary–against some great QBs.

    How would teams block us if our pass rush were:
    Aldon Smith
    Aaron Donald
    Tank Carradine
    A. Brooks/Lemonier

    Who could our opponents afford to double-team? Someone’s bursting through the line in under 2 seconds. And in that case, maybe T. Brock, Wright, and maybe a couple mid-round rookies would be just enough to win big games with.

    1. While I like your general thinking regarding the importance of pass rush, Baalke has kicked the CB/WR can so far down the road that I don’t think he can afford to spend what it would take to go get Donald. I also just read that Donald has short arms? If that’s the case forget about it – hahaha.

    2. Donald will be most effective as a penetrating Tackle in a 4-3. He’s not ideal for a 3-4 with his height and lack of bulk.

      1. The idea is the Donald wouldn’t be a run-down guy. It would be in the pass rush packages where he could be the difference between winning and losing in big-game situations.

      2. Exactly rocket.

        Sully, have you watched Donald on film? He gets ridden and pushed out of play far too often to suit the 49ers base formation. He can be a disruptive 3-tech in a 4-3, and that is the sort of team that will draft him.

        For the 49ers he would only be useful in the nickel on passing downs. Don’t spend a first round pick on a guy that will only ever be used for sub-packages. There are other guys they can take later on that can provide some pass rush in sub-packages, like Ethan Westbrooks.

        1. Yes, I’ve watched a lot of Donald on film. No, he’s not a 3-4 base guy. Yes, he’s worth a 1st round pick to us.

          1. Carradine will be counted on this year to be the “impact” pass rusher from the 3-tech on downs where J. Smith is off the field. Yes, I get they still don’t know what they have in him, but the whole point of taking him last season was that he’d be like getting an extra 1st round DL this year, with the added benefit of a full offseason program and having learned the playbook.

            If they took Donald they wouldn’t know what they had in him until he put on pads in anger either. That is the fun of draft picks.

              1. I like Hageman too razor. Eventual replacement for McDonald and can back up each spot along the line. DaQuan Jones is similar and can likely be had in the late 2nd/ early 3rd.

              2. Hageman or Jones would really strengthen the rotation and make for a fierce competition in camp….

              3. For sure, I’m all for it. I know they’ve got lots of bodies there already, but that doesn’t mean they can’t make it better. A strong DL is the cornerstone of this defense. Having 5 talented guys they can rotate in and out during the game would be a very good thing.

      3. Sully,

        As Scooter and Razor have pointed out, they aren’t going to use a 1st round pick on a situational player that doesn’t fit their base defense. You can find specialty guys later in the draft. Your first round pick has to be somebody who can start and be on the field all the time.

        Personally I’m excited to see what Carradine can do. This kid was a handful as a pass rusher at FSU.

  37. Grant ..
    what’s your take on Stanford DE Josh Mauro ?

    Would he be a good snag in the draft .. ?
    if so .. which round ?

  38. Here are my first three picks for at least the next 15 minutes:

    #30 Stephon Tuitt – I would play him at DT. He’s not my Justin Smith replacement.

    #50 (49ers send #56 and #125 to Miami) Trent Murphey. Play him at OLB. Murphey replaces Brooks after ’14. Brooks’s cap hit jumps to over $8M in ’15 and ’16 plus we have to extend Aldon Smith who is likely to earn more then Brooks. The Packers want Murphey too so we need to trade in front of them and the Dolphins seem to be our friends at the moment.

    #61 Jordan Matthews – People are worried about his speed when they should be paying attention to his hands. Harbaugh likes receivers with great hands. I also like his height and his ability to go up and get the ball. And how can you go wrong drafting Jerry Rice’s cousin on the 49ers?

    1. Coffee …
      glad Jordan Mathews is getting some love (here) again ..

      (I was beginning to think Grant abandoned him !) – ;-}

    2. Coffee,
      Lovin your pick 50 and 61. I just don’t think they will be there…

      #30 pick I would caveat your comment as bet player available. With that we need a solid not a potential over weight bust. Besides what’s up with Williams and Dorsey…

        1. hold on, hold on… slow down their brotha… should we trade back from 30 to early-mid second for Murphy??? Get another pick this year and/or next from some team in love with a QB

          1. Ideally but it takes two to tango. In a perfect world I believe Baalke would very much love to trade away #30 and move into the 40′ish range but who would make that move with them?

        2. We know Baalke will reach for his guy. So if he thinks TM will be gone in the early or mid second and he cant find anyone to trade back with he’ll absolutely take him at #30.

    3. “I also like his height and his ability to go up and get the ball”

      Given how our QB likes to end games this could be his most useful trait.

  39. Here are Grant’s grades on first-pick:

    Round 1 Pick 30: Bradley Roby, CB, Ohio State (B+)
    Round 2 Pick 24: Paul Richardson, WR, Colorado (A-)
    Round 2 Pick 29: Brett Smith, QB, Wyoming (E)

    An E for Smith? Is that somewhere between a D- and an F?

  40. What do people think about Running backs? I think the biggest issue with LMJ is that he hasn’t been that receiving weapon out of the backfield people seem to have expected him to be. I noticed that LMJ only caught 51 balls in 3 years with Chip Kelley. I’d like a decent sized back with some speed and who can catch more than just well-thrown dump-offs (we love you Frankie but…….). I noticed a guy named Charles Sims who sounds (at least according to Brugler/Rang) like a very effective receiver and decent runner. I see a lot of interest in Andre Brown, but he didn’t have a catch in 2013 and is described as “needs to improve reliability” in pass protection. That doesn’t sound very attractive to me. So what are people looking at in a possible RB pick?

      1. If strictly RB Tre Mason impressed the hell out of me in Championship game. He could take over RB duties for a good stretch I can see 15-20 carries over 6 games.

        If hybrid WR… DeAnthony Thomas hands down… dude is going to be a stud if deployed correctly.

        If you want a replacement for Boobie and potential work horse in mid to late rounds, then Terrance West from Townson (where I played ball BTW).

        Go Niners!!!

        1. I actually saw your fellow Tiger when I was looking through the RBs. Wouldn’t be a bad selection late. I still like this Sims guy…..

          I also like Mason but I don’t think he would be around when they go after a RB.

      1. He sounds pretty good as well. I think that a RB with good pass catching/blocking skills has a much better chance to earn some playing time this year, and be poised to take on a larger role in 2015. At this point, LMJ, Lattimore, and Hampton are the only RB under contract for 2015.

  41. Roby superior to Verrett? Really? Not in my book. JV proved not only his skills during the season and at the Combine, but his toughness, as well. He had a partially torn labrum, yet still put on a show in the field drills and hoisted the iron 19 times. If it came down to a choice between the two, I’d think Baalke would take Verrett over Roby.

    Richardson has speed, yes. But at 170 lbs he’s pretzel-thin for a WR. A much better option would be Moncrief, who has the speed but is 6-3, 225 and very athletic. It’s important to remember that Boldin’s on a 2-yr contract and Crabtree’s entering the final year of his rookie contract. Moncrief would be a much better potential replacement for either.

    I like Smith’s game…I live in Colorado Springs, so saw how he destroyed the Academy and just about every other team Wyoming played. That said, I have a hard time seeing Baalke pulling the trigger on him in the 2nd rd. Seems like a great spot to try for Easley, who could be a redshirt pick (a la Carradine) to add quality depth and potentially replace Ray Mac in the relatively near future.

  42. Verrett>Roby. Verett should be the pick here, or even trade up to get him. Only other CB the niners should target in the first is Gilbert from OK state. Verrett is the best corner in the draft when looking at pure talent and capability. Gilbert will go higher because of his size and special team contributions. Verrett will be the best CB. He should be the pick.

    1. Sorry that was for MWNiner,anyway here is my ST Pats Mock:(1) Kyle Fuller CB just a player,class with character -;(2) Trent Murphy DE-a new cowboy-head em up:(2) Im not gonna argue about him just take him motivate him give him a QB with an arm and watch him shine Donte Moncrief WR;(3)Travis Swanson our real next Center;(3) Jordan Tripp LB -he’s is damn good Scooter!(4) C. Loston- S will tandem again with Reid in near future(4) M Huff versatile underrated DB;(5) Jeff Janis WR big fast -I’m not sleeping on him Razor;(7) A.Colvin redshirt CB;(7) Spencer Long OG redshirt !

      1. Yes on Donte Moncrief. Janis is a big boy too. At 6’3″, 219lbs he still had a blazing 1.47 10-yard split. Perhaps the best at the combine.

  43. Please no Verrett, last thing we need is a speed bump in the secondary. Give me someone that didn’t stop growing in the 8th grade.

    1. CFC,

      Verrett doesn’t play small. He is very physical and tackles well. He’s also the best coverage CB in this draft imo. His height is not ideal but if you watch his reel, he doesn’t get pushed around out there. He’s only about 6 pounds lighter than Revis right now before getting into an NFL training program.

        1. The same thing was said about Earl Thomas at FS and look how well that has turned out for Seattle Coffee.

          1. We could both make lists of successful shorter players in the NFL, it’s simply a personal preference. Note that I never mentioned that he couldn’t play, I just don’t like short CB’s, among other positions.

              1. I’m just pointing out that his being short isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
                To me it is. I’d use a later round pick on a shorter player if it appears he has some special talent but the risk vs reward on a shorter player isn’t worth the high round pick value for me.

        2. CFC,

          Fair enough. I would guess more share your view than don’t. Verrett is just an exception to the rule for me.

  44. Richardson is AJ Jenkins 2.0. I hope that Baalke has learned his lesson from that mistake. He’ll stay away from drafting a WR in the 1st two rounds. Look for the Niners to load up on defensive players in the early rounds.

  45. NFL Live ended today with a clip of Jim Harbaugh in a pushups contest with Andy Reid.
    What? Really?
    Never mind, I’m told that was an actual walrus, not Coach Reid.

  46. If you’re going to pick a QB in the 2nd round you might as well make the move to get Mettenberger. There’s no comparison between Mettenberger and Smith. Why reach for Smith when you can get a far better player in the same round.

    1. I like Mettenberger, too. He might be a better fit for the Niners because Harbaugh seems to like his QB to drop straight back most of the time.

      Smith would be a great fit for the Eagles.

          1. I know you do. A QB that can drop straight back 9 out of 10 pass plays and see the field and make his reads is 100 times more dangerous then the gazelle that makes one read and then sprints for the forest(or wherever gazelles run to).

            1. Mettenberger is good, but he won’t be a great QB. He’s a Flacco type. Needs to be surrounded by great players.

              1. He’s a Flacco type.
                So you think Mettenberger is a SuperBowl winning QB. That’s high praise but you could be right ;0

              2. A good QB can win a Super Bowl if he’s on a stacked team.
                I agree, Kaepernick isn’t good.

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