Here’s who the 49ers should pick in each round of the upcoming draft.
Round 1, pick 2: Trade down with the Raiders for pick 4 in exchange for picks 24 and 141
We can debate whether Nick Bosa or Josh Allen is the best player in this year’s draft (it’s Allen), but the answer shouldn’t matter to the 49ers, because neither player is good enough to take them to the Super Bowl next season. The 49ers still are rebuilding and have holes all over their roster — more holes than their six draft picks can fill. The 49ers should trade down more than once for more picks. First, they should trade down two spots with the Raiders, so John Gruden and Mike Mayock can select their quarterback of the future — Dwayne Haskins of Ohio State.
Round 1, pick 4: Trade down with the Broncos in exchange for picks 10 and 41.
This trade down gives the 49ers five picks in the top 67, and nine picks total. Now, we’re talking. The Broncos move up to take quarterback Drew Lock from Missouri, whom John Elway reportedly loves. I like Lock, too. He’s the best quarterback prospect in this draft.
Round 1, pick 10: Brian Burns, DE/OLB, Florida State.
The 49ers still can get an elite edge-rusher with the 10th pick. Burns bends to the ground as he circles the arc to the quarterback better than any player in this draft. He would complement DeForest Buckner perfectly.
Round 1, pick 24 (from Oakland): Deandre Baker, CB, Georgia.
Arguably the best corner in the draft, Baker will fall to the 24th pick because he ran a 4.52 at the Combine, and teams typically don’t draft corners who run in the 4.5s before the 25th pick. Baker can start right away for the 49ers at right cornerback across from Richard Sherman, and eventually replace him.
Round 2, pick 36: Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State.
Arguably the best pass protector in the draft, Dillard can play left tackle for the 49ers in 2020 if Joe Staley leaves during free agency or retires. Dillard will fall to Round 2 because he lacks strength and may not be ready to play right away. If he is ready, the 49ers can play him at guard his rookie season.
Round 2, pick 41 (from Denver): Juan Thornhill, FS, Virginia.
Another player who potentially can start right away for the 49ers. Thornhill is a playmaker who picked off six passes in 13 games last season, and an excellent athlete who ran a 4.42 at the Combine.
Round 3, pick 67: Terry McLaurin, WR, Ohio State.
The second coming of Mike Wallace. McLaurin can begin his rookie season as a backup (practically all rookie wide receivers should start as backups), then become a starter in 2020. He has the speed to complement Dante Pettis and Kendrick Bourne.
Round 4, pick 101: T.J. Edwards, LB, Wisconsin.
Not a spectacular athlete — Edwards skipped most of the athletic testing at the Combine. But, he is a tough player who started four years in college, recorded 366 tackles, intercepted 10 passes and broke up 15. A major playmaker with fantastic instincts who will improve the 49ers’ run defense and zone coverage.
Round 5, pick 141 (from Oakland): Dru Samia, OG, Oklahoma.
The starting right guard for the best offensive line in college football last season, and the starting right guard for Kyle Shanahan at the Senior Bowl this year. Samia can spend his rookie season on the bench, then take over at right guard in 2020.
Round 6, pick 176: Tyre Brady, WR, Marshall.
Also started for Shanahan in the Senior Bowl. Brady is a big receiver with long, 33 5/8″ arms who can beat press coverage and make contested catches.
Round 6, pick 212: Darrin Hall, RB, Pitt.
A powerful running back with breakaway speed who inexplicably didn’t receive an invitation to the Combine. Hall immediately would improve the 49ers’ 32-ranked red-zone offense.