Three players the 49ers absolutely should not draft


I know you’re busy thinking about all the players the 49ers should draft two weeks from now. But, I’d like you to take a minute to name three players the 49ers should NOT draft, and explain your picks.

I’ll start the discussion:

  1. Christian McCaffrey, RB/WR, Stanford. The 49ers have too many needs to spend a high pick on a gadget player.
  2. Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama. The defense needs a cornerback, but Humphrey give up lots of deep catches and Alabama corners typically fail in the NFL.
  3. Davis Webb, QB, Cal. Webb comes from an Air Raid offense, which never has produced a successful NFL quarterback.

This article has 285 Comments

    1. This is all you need to see. Th blown coverages you just won’t see at the next level. I think Ross will struggle to get open because he is small.

      1. Tell that to Tyreek Hill (Ross is an inch taller and 5lbs heavier fyi)…speed like that is deceptive and deadly, and if the safteys are playing zone, these guys will blow through that and get behind the safteys without a doubt.

        Also, the guy can be used out of the backfield on sweeps and wham plays.

          1. We’ve seen what Hill did. Not saying its a given but a guy of the same size and speed showed that they can be dynamic…and they both have crazy ball location skills.

            1. Oh, so one guy does it then everyone can. There is a reason for desiring protyipical size and height in receivers.

              1. Wes Welker
                Julian Edleman
                Golden Tate
                Randall Cobb
                Greg Jennings
                Steve Smith
                Antonio Bryant
                DeSean Jackson
                Eddie Royal

                Need I go on?

      2. John Ross – 5’11 188 lbs
        Antonio Brown – 5’10 181 lbs
        Odell Beckham – 5’11 198 lbs

        Ross is small but other guys around the same size have been extremely successful in the NFL.

        1. I never had concerns with his size, just his knees. As far as I know, they’ve checked out just fine. He’s a top 15 talent in my opinion….

          1. True. Definite concern. The other top receiver in this draft, Mike Williams, had a serious neck issue. I still like both of them. Dream scenario is 49ers are able to trade down and pick up either Ross or Williams.

        2. Are you saying Ross is as good as both of these two? I don’t see it. First, Brown was a 6th rounder I believe and Odell is a freak. Ross does not remind me of Odell in the least who I liked. He seems far more pedestrian to me.

          1. Who knows if Ross will be as good as those 2 players. In my opinion he has a chance to be great and is absolutely worth a high 1st round draft pick. The guy scored a TD every 5th time he touched the ball. That’s absolutely amazing. Better than Mike Williams and Corey Davis. The guy could be special.

    2. before we get the next Antonio brown and tom brady lets get big strong and fast first. if we can dangle pick to jets we might still come away with Solomon Thomas and a second rounder. Trade our pick in the second round plus erik armstead to maybe the cowboys to try to get forrest lamp. then the second rounder from jets we get corner…. chidobe awuze or Fabian moreau. third round I would like to see that single high safety. as far as late in the draft a fast strong wr like josh Malone and a te like antony auclair. like I said lets get strong and fast. we can get four studs with four picks in three rounds. Not little fast recievers or real tall safeties. sound solid players who wont be out three to four weeks every year. (forrest lamp is the best lineman in the draft).

      1. As a fan of both the niners and Stanford, I don’t think that McCaffery makes sense for us at this stage of our rebuild. I do think that he would be perfect for a team like New England. Christian would flourish in BB’s system.

      2. Exactly right Grant! He’s a complementery player but not a key player. If you draft him as one a team will be disappointed.

      3. OMG, Grant’s talking sense this morning. You’re not “Pod People” Grant are you?

        To me he’s a Darrin Nelson kind of guy. A really good supplement but not a corner stone.

        Walsh wanted Nelson but the Vikings got him. Nelson had a good career as a utility/change-of-pace half-back. But when you look at his total production, it wasn’t that much — 4,442 rushing & 2,559 receiving. Good averages, but not not a work horse. And while he played 11 years, he was only really good for the 5 of the first 6.

        1. McCaffery reminds me of Reggie Bush. He won’t ever be a true #1 back, he will be a guy who will have to earn his eat at multiple positions, 5-10 plays at hb, 5-10 plays at wr, a little kr duty and pr duty (if he’s capable).

          Not what you’d want from a 1st round pick (guys who are supposed to lock down a position for 10 years and never miss a snap).

  1. If you are qualifying your judgement on McCaffrey as a 2nd slot in the first round ok. However I doubt that is the case-you have argued that he has too many miles on him and slagged him for taking two games off (while the RB you picked in your last mock took twice as many) and now a player I venture to say most pundits would call a multiple threat weapon you dis as a gadget player.I am sorry but I must disagree.

  2. I disagree on Caff. He’s more than a gadget player. He doesn’t get the credit he dserves for his running skills because he isn’t a powerful runner, but he has excellent vision, patience and footwork.

    Agree on Humphrey and Webb though.

    Other guys they shouldn’t draft imo:
    – Takk McKinley: He’s a good athlete and has a high motor, but he needs significant improvement in his pass rush skills to be effective in the pros.
    – Charles Harris: Good get off… and not much else. I think he will struggle against the better athletes in the NFL.
    – Taco Charlton: Just… no. What is it about him that people like so much? He’s decent, nothing special. And 49ers already have their big DEs.
    – Any of the top DTs after Thomas and Allen (McDowell, Wormley, Brantley). Just no need for them, and not offering anything better than what the 49ers already have.
    – Curtis Samuel: He is a gadget player. Not a good RB.

    1. A couple of other 1st/2nd round guys I don’t think the 49ers should draft:

      – Obi Melifonwu: Due to his size he gets compared to Chancellor, but this is a bad comp. He is a FS despite his size. Not an in the box safety like the 49ers will be using. He is at his best supporting the run from deeper, and covering the back end.
      – Cordrea Tankersley: Pretty good man CB, but is an older prospect that still has pretty questionable football IQ. Might take a little while to be ready. In a deep CB class I wouldn’t take him before the 3rd round.

      1. Agree on Obi Melifonwu. Did not look like a decisive box tackler. I was thinking corner conversion.

        1. Sorry to disagree with Obi Melifonwu. He has the size and speed to be a very good player. Too bad he is getting mocked into the end of the first round, so he may not be available at 34.

          He is 6’4″, weighs 224lbs, and runs a 4.4 forty. That is a very rare combination of size and speed.

              1. Mays wasn’t a skilled player. That was the problem. Good athlete doesn’t always = good football player.

                Obi is better than Mays, but he is being overrated because of his athleticism.

              2. You can get away with just being an athlete in college. He did nothing once he played against the big boys in the NFL.

              3. Yes, I will concede that he did not make the cut in the NFL.

                However, before the draft, some pundits were luke warm about him, and the Niners took him anyways.

              4. Obi is better than Mays, but he is being overrated because of his athleticism.


        1. Caff gets labelled a Bush clone because he is from the Pac 12, but he’s a better technician than Bush who relied on his athleticism above all else. He’s more of a Tiki Barber type back, but a more polished receiver.

          1. I can sort of see that but I see him as being in the mold of Bush. Outstanding collegiate athlete who could not make it in pros for various reasons.

      2. Why do you think Obi would be in the box? He’s a free safety and SF definitely needs a single high free safety.

        1. Yep, he’s a FS, like I said. But many seem to see his size and assume he would be a great fit for the Chancellor role. He is not. And for the single high safety role there are better options.

        2. Not good in space. Doesn’t have a good feel for where the QB is going with the ball. Lots of coverage/support issues. But he has a good highlight reel where he was able to, a few times a year, make a big play because of his athleticism and he gets awards and people drooling over him because of his athleticism.

          But if want a real, single-high safety and you’re going to draft one — Hooker.

          And while I’m sure some of this is your pre-draft hype, he actually comps to Sean Taylor who was considered one of the best FS prospects in the history of the NFL. To put Sean Taylor in perspective, he was as big a hitter are Roy Williams (Cowboys – 5x Pro Bowler, All Pro) in the box and as much of a ball hawk as Ed Reed (Ravens – 9x Pro Bowl, 5x All Pro, future HOFer) as a prospect.

          I’d stay away from Adams (he’s a strong safety type) and Peppers (he’s Taylor Mays all over again).

          1. I beg to differ. Peppers will be more like TM, the Honey Badger, than Taylor Mays. Many questioned TM, but he turned out fine.

      3. I disagree about Obi Melifonwu, because I think of him as a Free Safety. While I understand people want Ward back there to give him a chance, which is fine, Melifonwu as a free safety is worth a top 2nd round pick.

        1. There are better options for single high safety imo. Obi is too reliant on his athleticism, not great at reading and reacting quickly at the back in coverage.

        2. He’s not Ed Reed to break on the ball before the QB throws it. He’s not Ronnie Lott to do the same and lay the hammer down.

          No, he breaks on the ball after it’s thrown while relying on his athleticim to close. While that works in college when he breaks on 45mph pass (most of college QBs) it’s a far different thing to break on 50-to-55 mph pass (most of your average to front-line NFL starters).

          That pass velocity difference is between 1 and 2 steps he won’t get when he breaks on the ball for even the shallow intermediate routes (10-15 yards).

          Being a FS is a ‘head’ position. Yes, you need to be athletic. But athleticism won’t make a good FS. Just it like it won’t make you a good QB. You have to have a feel for the passing game and understand the play as it unfold and make a decision in anticipation of where the QB will make his throw.

    1. I agree. I think Webb has the best chance of succeeding in the long-run. All of the QBs need development time. But I think Webb’s intelligence, work ethic, and leadership really sets him apart from the rest of the guys. Although, I do like Watson for some of the same reasons as well.

      I think he’s a guy that we could target at 34, or possibly trade a mid-to-late round pick to jump back into the end of the 1st round. He’s a nice piece of clay for Shanahan to work with.

        1. I worry on Webb. His most glaring weakness is poor fundamentals discipline with his footwork. It effects his accuracy and its recurrent. This bugs me because he’s a coach’s son and has presumably already been coached up on this. If Dad and college didn’t correct it, can NFL coaches?

      1. I like Webb, too, but think he will fall to the third round.

        In the third round, Webb would be a good pickup. Save the first 2 picks for defense.

  3. The only one I disagree with his Webb. I understand that there hasn’t been much success from Air Raid offense QBs (I.E. Goff), but there hasn’t been a lot of success with college QBs in general. Almost every QB comes from the spread offense, and there’s probably only 15 good QBs on the entire planet.

    Every QB in this draft is a developmental project, no doubt. But there’s a few reasons why I think Webb could succeed.

    1. He’s a natural leader. He was captain at Texas Tech and was named a captain at Cal after only being there 8 weeks. He’s the type of guy that I could see guys rallying around.

    2. He has all the physical traits. Good arm, 6’5, has a little bit of mobility.

    3. From what I’ve read, his work ethic is second to none. He’s the type of guy that will be the first in the building and the last one out.

    When you combine his physical traits and his work ethic, combined with tutelage from Shanhan, I think he could be the best QB from this draft 2 years from now.

      1. Um… How many college players are taking their game to other schools the last 2-3 years? Many. I’d think that at least some are not weakling men.

      1. I watched every cal game. Webb is all over the place. Lets not project lets just look at the tape. You throw that many passes some are bound to look good. just as many look bad

    1. Not one has succeeded, here’s a list of those that have actually throw real-game passes, so no-action 3rd stringers and cut-in-camp guys (about 15 more) aren’t on the list:

      Tim Couch
      Brandon Weeden
      Johnny Manziel
      Kevin Kolb
      Geno Smith
      John Beck
      Nick Foles
      Case Keenum
      Dominique Davis
      Graham Harrell
      Jared Lorenzen
      Max Hall

      These QBs, one-and-all, lacked the fundamentals necessary to make it in the NFL. It’s already brutally difficult to make it as a QB in the NFL, but the Air Raid offense (by its nature) just makes it harder.

      They don’t learn to read defenses. They don’t know how go through progressions. They don’t have to have good mechanics or solid fundamentals. They just drop back and play street ball.

      Been there, done that, owned the arguments.

      1. When your 0 for 13 in baseball they would say you’re due. No matter how many players fail, it does not mean no player will ever succeed. Take him one or two rounds lower than otherwise but we will never know until he is given a chance. I’m anxious to see what he does with proper NFL coaching because I think he could be a real sleeper choice.

      2. Andre Ware and David Klingler were 2 very successful run & shoot QBs in their college days and racked up tons of yards and TDs; however, were very minimal producers in the NFL. There is more to being a successful QB in the NFL than just accumulating a ton of yards and TDs in college.

  4. RB Joe Williams : Kicked off one team and shortly retired from another.

    OLB Ryan Anderson: Questions about character were not helped by his childish action of telling Deshaun Watson a few weeks back to leave an Alabama restaurant.

    QB Chad Kelly: Has the potential, but has questionable character off the field along with injury concerns.

    1. I’m good with drafting Williams…later, not early. I’ve seen him play. If he’s available in the 6th round, get him.

      1. andrew

        football’s a tough game…played by tough guys…some more than others….what the hey…what is Kelly..22 Years old..? Who’s gonna’ cast that first stone….

        1. I was in the military. I’d go to bars. Every now and then there’d be some *hole trying to pick a fight. Never did let it happen. It’s called ‘being a grown up.’

        1. Seems pretty minor. I wouldn’t take him off my list unless they found something was covered up in that incident. And the thing with Watson doesn’t seem a reason to worry for me either. Immature, sure, but he’s clearly pretty passionate, which shows up in his play.

          1. Immaturity like that can rear its ugly head at the worst possible time though. It is way too close to the draft for Anderson to do something so childish.

        2. I really like Ryan Anderson, but never seemed to be able to choose him in many of my mocks.

          Seemed like i would always have to decide between him and Davis Webb

  5. Might be the first time I’ve fully agreed with Grant. If Caff is there​ at 34 then I wouldn’t be fully opposed to it though. Webb has career backup written all over him to me.

  6. I saw your headline and laughed to myself because I just knew you’d have a certain QB on the list. I consider myself only partially incorrect since you listed a single name but ruled out more then one player at the same time. :)

  7. Marshon Lattimore-Love hurts and he’ll break your heart with his hammy’s.

    Jonathan Allen-Monster with weak shoulders. Avoid at all costs top ten.

    Sidney Jones-No guarantee he regains burst. Team needs athletes on the field this year.

    1. Agree on Lattimore and Allen. However, drafting Jones could help set the secondary for 2018 and going forward.

  8. Mcaff is a triple threat though. we could get a PR?KR, Scat back who can catch, WR. Not bad if we get him at 34.

  9. They should not draft for any reason:

    Chad Kelly – Even as a UFA the risk doesnt match the reward

    Derek Barnett – Third round player who is being touted as a first. Used a quick first step and some strength to have a decent College career. Too slow to be an elite NFL pass rusher.

    McCaffrey. I know its not original but I completely agree. Some bristle at the Bush comparisons but I dont think theyre far off.

      1. Nope the first one will be pure bust the second will be a bust for the round he’s taken in and the third will likely never play more then two full 16 games seasons during his career.

    1. I have to disagree with you on Barnett. Highly productive player in a tough conference that didn’t pad his stats by being surrounded by freaks (insert Alabama player name here). Also speed should not be a concern.

      1. All good points MM but speed is a concern. I’m not saying he wont be productive but I don’t see him as an elite pass rusher in the NFL. He wont be worth the first round pick used on him.

        1. He’s a tough read. Talent wise I have concerns… but sometimes guys play better than their talent shows like T. Suggs. The encouraging part is he can still grow a lot in terms of technique. He and Tak are very interesting prospects in that I see them both about the same… highly productive, undeveloped players, that have some great and not so great physical skill sets. They could be boom or bust picks.

    2. You are wrong about Derek Barnett. He is the best pass rusher in this draft. Too slow doesn’t matter when you produce consistently for three years. James Harrison was considered too slow but I see him as that type of player. He should be 49ers first overall pick

    3. I don’t know an UFA? That really carries no risk in my book CFC? I could pick Kelly up then, but only then. Barnett you see as third round talent, why? He did well against very good top tier competition?
      I agree on McCaffrey as he is the darling of the moment but I see nothing in him that makes me want to shout.

      1. Consider the first two comments hyperbole for the sake of. I don’t think Kelly is worth an NFL roster spot and I wouldn’t use a first round pick on Barnnett.

  10. Not a fan of Webb… but In regards to qbs in air raid offenses… Id have to disagree…. Jared Goff still has a chance to succeed…. And shannahan made rg3 look like a future franchise qb…. Not only that but the NFL itself is still becoming more of a pass first league….. And shannahans offense is at the top of that list… I say this because I still think mahomes is still the best qb in this draft. And he’s not your typical air raid qb….. Jus sayin =)

    1. Starting with Tim Couch, not one Air-Raid QB has ever succeeded. RGIII was successful in a junk offense the NFL took about a year to neutralize. He was absolutely incapable of playing real QB in the NFL.

      So he, like other junk-offense (pistol, air-raid, etc.) QBs are on the sidelines or relegated to career back-up.

  11. How is deshone Kiser not on list he is undrafted free agent at best and is being considered a 2nd round pick

  12. I’m confused how Watson became mayocks #1 And did not make this list either lol. Talk about a gimmick offense(half field reads)And a run first qb with about 10x qb run plays per game….. lol I get it he won big games…. But shannahan alrdy stated he wants players that fit “their system” and Watson truly doesn’t…… He’s alot like kaep. And Kaeps not on this team specifically for that reason according to shannahans most recent press conference.

  13. sebnynah
    April 13, 2017 at 9:08 am

    I will keep on putting up mocks because it seems like things are changing daily

    Cassie Baalke
    April 13, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    Fighting the urge to rework Carly Simon’s ‘You’re so Vain’ for Mr. Seb…

    TomD’s Take: Cassie correctly notes Seb’s vanity, which I have labeled–narcissism with regressive fixation tendancies.

    The vanity/narcissm portion is obvious….Seb will flood this site with 100 mock drafts or so, likely including the 1,000 players this plan would entail.

    After the draft, Seb will reveal to all his prognosticating genius, when the 49ers troll his mocks and take 5 of Seb’s players.
    For the remainder of the NFL season Seb will not hesitate to use his drafting prowess to demean Prime, Cassie, SawBrodie, Juanhunglo and other posters when engaged in debate.
    Seb–The Narcissist video

    1. Cassie,

      It’s still a few weeks before the draft and I’m sure we could use some comedic relief .

      Please work on that Carly Simon/Seb song, for all of our sakes.


    2. That’s why I mock people who say crap like ‘I picked so-and-so in my mock draft.’ By the end of mock-draft season, they’ve picked practically everyone.

      What I want is ONE mock draft that you put on a blog then sent to The Wayback Machine or other Internet archive so you can’t change it. Then swing your d*ck if, after a decade or so, you’ve routinely beaten the NFL.

  14. My top 5 qbs…
    1. Mahomes
    2. Trubisky
    3. Nathan Peterman
    4. Kizer
    5. Josh Dobbs / Webb.

    Watson dnt make the list imo
    But none of them shld be 1st rnd picks anyway. Atleast not for us.

  15. McCaffrey probably won’t make it past New England, where he will thrive.

    Humphrey looked outmatched in the National Championship Game.

    Webb could thrive in Coach Shanahan’s offense.

      1. The Pats seem OK with asymmetric offense. They tortured the league with two tight end sets. A few years later abused defenses with multiple small-ish but agile receiver sets.

        Rather than the typical “balanced” sets comprising Possession, Slot, “Number 1” receivers… they seem to take advantage of match-up problems caused by having similar style pass catchers at the same time. Defenses have to have two quality LBs that can cover TEs, or two agile slot cover corners to stop them. Many don’t.

        1. Good points, but should they really spend a 1st round pick on another Edelman, especially considering they already traded a 1st round pick for Cooks?

          1. Valuation of McCaffrey is the tough part. Where to take him?

            So many running backs are used up by the 2nd contract. If I’m building a team I’d think long and hard about any day one running back.

          2. Am I missing something? Why are Pats in the Caff discussion when they don’t have a first or second round pick?
            Draft media buzz has Christian in the top half of the first.

            1. That’s what I thought Brotha Tuna! Am I going crazy or didn’t the Pat’s trade the 1st rounder this year for Cooks? In fact, I don’t think the Pats have a 1st or a 2nd this year? How exactly would the the Patriots draft McCaffrey unless he falls to the 3rd, which seems unimaginable to me?

          3. McCaffrey reminds me of the story about the cook at a French restaurant who got a good deal on some mozzarella.

            Its high quality, but its not an Italian restaurant. He has no menu item that uses mozzarella. So he puts it in the walk-in cooler, vowing to draw up a menu special later in the week.

            But he’s so busy, he forgets about it. The mozzarella gets pushed farther and farther into the back of the walk-in. A year later its a science project discovered by the health inspector.

            Amy team that takes McCaffrey better have an exact vision and array of plays to accommodate his skills.

            Don’t get me wrong. He can play in a variety of offenses. But he’s also the kind of guy a non-creative OC will under use or put in the wrong situations.

    1. Since the Patriots’ first pick in the 2017 draft is #72 Over-all, I’m pretty sure CMc won’t be going to New England.

  16. Demarcus Walker, FSU , DE–6′-4″, 280 Lbs.

    “DeMarcus Walker falls into that category of great prospects that slip out of the mind of many due to the lack of attention and media buzz. Thanks to a very deep class, some team will have the opportunity to select a high caliber and talented player in Walker on day 2.

    The All-American was second in the nation in sacks this season, and his ability to cause disruptions and chaos in the opponents backfield rivaled anyone in the country.”

    Above Source: SB Nation–2017 NFL Scouting Report, Demarcus Walker

    Walker’s 2016 FSU Highligts

  17. I’m going to limit my thoughts to a pick in the 1-8 range

    1) Malik Hooker/ jabrill peppers. Chronic injury concerns
    2) Foster- I already hate that he would say “do you know who I am”. I don’t want to root for him.
    3) Solomon Thomas. Wary of a guy showing up as a top prospect, after the season ended.

  18. I would not take McCaffrey at two because there are several other players that can help the 49ers more.

    But there’s alot I like about McCaffrey. He’d be quite a weapon on a team with a accurate timing passer. A defenses match-up nightmare. A defenses personnel package has a linebacker responsible for him, the quarterback audibles to a pass. The defenses counters with nickle, run it down their throats.

    I think he”ll get his snaps, “bell cow” or not.
    Kick or Punt returns – 8 to 12 snaps per game
    Slot WR – 20 snaps her game
    COP Back – 15 snaps per game.

    Check out Waldman’s latest RSP on him

    Want to torture linebackers? Draft McCaffrey and Evan Engram. “Juice” FB, McCaffrey HB, Engram TE is a nice matchup nightmare for the D. Teams would be forced to put a nickle package on the field vs our base.

      1. hightop – Great choice. I like to use the “game plan” argument for draft crush tiebreakers.

        What players would be the biggest pain for a defensive coordinator? Caff and Engram are near the top.

        Conversely, Hooker would present major problems for an offensive coordinator. But I have big concerns about his durability.

  19. Armed with the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, the Niners would likely have to spend this pick — or a moderate trade-down — to acquire Fournette’s services. He’ll be gone before San Francisco selects again at No. 34.
    Doing so would mean one thing — the team wants to move on from incumbent running back Carlos Hyde.

    This is the scenario laid out by Tony Pauline of, who wrote:

    Sources with knowledge of the situation tell me the San Francisco 49ers are very high on Fournette and are seriously considering using the second pick of the draft to acquire him.

    1. But the fact he (Hyde) has yet to crest 1,000 yards on the ground in any one season speaks volumes.


  20. Jordan Willis – People are projecting him to the 49ers in the 2nd or 3rd. He has great combine numbers. But I watched a breakdown of him. He moves really slow. Doesn’t seem very flexible for an edge rusher.

    To be fair, I only saw one game of breakdown. If anyone has a breakdown where he looks anywhere near his combine speed, I’d like to see it.

    Leonard Fournette – Great athlete. Not at pick 2 though.

    Alvin Kamara – Bounces outside too early. Fumbler.

      1. Scooter – Thanks. Even on my improved bandwidth its going to take me a while to download them. I’ll check them out later.

        Like I said, his combine numbers are great. If I see it reflected in on field play, I’ll do a 180 and put him on my crush list.

        1. Nw. Basically it shows a guy whos athleticism shows on tape as well, but needs to work on his technique bending the corner.

      2. Transfers speed to power very well. Has spin move too. Clearly has physical gifts. Needs to not square up and show his chest to the OT. Maybe try one handed stab while presenting small torso target to OT. Bosa does this very well.

        He can definitely develop into a QB killer. Just wondering where his best fit is. Still doesn’t seem like a classic quick twitch bend edge rusher. Maybe left side DE in 4-3. Stout enough to stuff the run.

  21. one thing is for sure…..this draft will be exciting!
    We all had a sense of Baalke’s philosophy’s…….and thus the dafts of recent years were somewhat predictable……
    for example-
    we knew we were not drafting a qb eraly ’cause Kap was around….
    nor rb ’cause Hyde was the heir to Gore
    no Wr ’cause Baalke was gun shy from AJJ
    no Tackle “cause staley was in his prime, AD young and promising
    no TE…….Vernon Davis

    This year……anything can happen! Literally! Baalke shied away from offensive skill positions……the new regime will not.
    Guys like Staley, Hyde, Armstead may not be viewed in such high regard with the new FO

    Last year…..every dang mock draft had us taking Buckner……and we did! That’s how predictable TB was. We also knew he’d draft some injured players and multiple cb’s!
    and we knew he’d draft O-linemen in later rounds that would never pan out.

    This draft will be a breath of fresh air……and will allow us a real glimpse into ShanaLynch’s mind set about a lot of things.

    1. That’s because Baalke subscribed to Sports Illustrated, Althon’s, Lindy’s and ProFootball Weekly’s Draft Magazines prior to every draft.

    2. Well bud your wrong about one thing. Every mock had Buckner going before our pick. We were lucky to get Buckner. The year before everyone was mocking Armstead. I think you got your years confused. Good points either way.

      1. Huh? Both Todd Mcshay and Daniel Jeremiah had us taking Defo. Mel had him going one pick later to NY with us taking Staley…. the only fit for him above SF was the chargers… so there was a good chance he would fall to us.

  22. What do you guys think about Mike Dillenbacher from northwestern Idaho? I think he’d be an ideal fit in Shanahan’s system.

    1. I don’t mind the idea of adding Gilliam. Obviously he struggled particularly last year, but as a backup with some growth potential they can do a lot worse.

    1. +1 Diesel.

      Bleacher Report’s MATT MILLER has Solomon Thomas ranked as the 45th best prospect on his big board. Yes, Miller is only one “expert”, but, while I think Miller’s ranking is a little low, #45 is a long, long, long way from #2.

        1. My bad Scooter, I was looking at Miller’s December 7th, 2016 Big Board (linked below). Thanks for keeping me honest.

          Miller had Solomon Thomas ranked 45th in early December, sandwiched in between the Gators talented LB Jarred Davis (who I like a lot) and Bama’s CB Marlon Humphrey, whom I think is over rated.

          Thomas has since experienced a meteoric rise as a draft prospect, which concerns me. Sure, he finished last season strong and had an impressive combine, but it’s my opinion that Thomas has recently garnered more hype than he deserves.

          Thomas is a very good player, certainly a top 15 prospect. But I wouldn’t touch him at #2. I don’t think he would have the type of impact you want out of a top 5 pick when you consider the 49ers current needs. In fact, it sounds like Lynch and Saleh have high hopes for Aaron Lynch as a hand on the ground, hair on fire pass rusher at the 6T.

          There are at least 5 prospects I’d take ahead of Thomas, maybe more if I’m willing to take a gamble on a small school prospect like Corey Davis!

        2. What are you on about? Miller has him as a top 10 prospect in his latest rankings.

          99% of draft sites have King Solomon in the top 5, because they are wise enough to realize he’s a weapon of mass disruption….

  23. Lol Tom, that’s why I asked the question way back when about how does someone claim they were correct in picking draft picks! Is it an accumulation of all your mocks, or is it your final mock just before the draft. I would hope it’s the latter if your going to brag about how many you got right! Anyone can put forth a multitude of mocks and by pure chance are going to get some picks correct. Big whoopie. So if anyone is really interested in taking credit for their draft prowess, I suggest you label your final final mock as the one and only mock you put forward. All the rest are meaningless. What do you think? I think it’s fair. No more claiming you picked all the picks right when you put forth 140 mocks! As for McCaffery, I don’t think he’s a gadget player. I think he’s got talent and he is versatile. He can be a return guy, he can line up as a receiver, and as a running back. Not a early first round pick but if they trade back and have a late first or more early second round I’d look at him for sure. Webb would be a project and Humphrey I have no idea.

    1. Juan, I have put up many mocks, but the one where I got 3 right was my last mock right before the draft.

      Lets see your mock and we will monitor how many picks you got right this year when the draft happens in 2 weeks.

      It is amusing when posters denigrate my mock when they did not get a single one right. Many did not think Buckner would be the first round pick of the Niners because it was the most logical.

      I will also take credit for mocking CJ Prosise many times. Maybe the Seahawks are monitoring these blogs because they have poached former Niners for intel, and chose Prosise, who has proven to be a good RB when healthy. I noticed they picked up Willhoite, but with a new HC and GM, his intel may be stale. However, he may give good insights on the remaining personnel, and can describe tendencies.

      My last mock had Christian Mccaffrey, so maybe Grant’s pointed reference to avoid him is in direct contradiction to my mock.

      I think that Christian McCaffrey would be a great change of pace RB to work in tandem with Hyde. Bill Walsh would have liked his versatility, and the threat of him creating mismatches.
      I also think getting sons of former Niners may be a good way to capture some of that winning mojo.

        1. I was thinking of players like TJ MacDonald, the son of Tim.

          However, they did do exactly that when they drafted Joshua Garnett, the son of Scot Garnett, a former Niner.

          What round did Nate or Nick get drafted in?

  24. You have a lot of gall calling McCaffrey a gadget player…do yourself a favor, look at his tape. He ran the ball well, is the best route runner (better than many WR’s), has great hands, returns kicks of all kinds. Wow, Grant. You call Webb an air raid QB…really? But, you’re ok with Mahomes, eh. Wow, Grant. WRT Humphries, I’d agree there are better CB’s in this draft, which is loaded with ’em. I really like Ahkello Witherspoon and Awuzie from CO.

  25. I agree about Chad Kelly and Christian McCaffrey. Kelly makes a young Ryan Leaf seem humble, and mature.

    McCaffrey is the classic “luxury pick”, best suited for consideration by a contender.

    I’ll add a few more:

    RB Joe Mixon. He’ll never get out from under that horrible incident caught on tape. If I am setting the over/under for the length of his NFL career, I am going with 3 seasons.

    OL Chad Wheeler: Simply put, he’s not an NFL athlete. His lack of natural core strength makes him a slim bet to stay healthy regardless of whether or not he’s even athletic enough to make an active roster.

    3) QB Patrick Mahomes. He’s my vote for most overrated prospect in this draft class. His strong a and sneaky athleticism aren’t nearly enough to overcome pathetic mechanics, poor judgement, and one of the least consistent throwing motions in the nation. Add exclusively experienced in an Air-Raid offense to the list of deficiencies and you have a major “rebuild from the ground up” reclamation project!

    1. Mahomes will be a bust in the NFL. Most of his passing yards came in way of YAC or broken plays. Let’s hope the 49ers don’t waste a draft pick on him.

      1. +1 Nick.

        I’m absolutely gobsmacked by the hype this kid is generating. I’ve studied a lot of QB’s in my day and I would prate Mahomes value no higher than round 5 in this QB draft class, which is below average compared to recent draft classes.

        Mahomes certainly has a strong arm but, If he’s not throwing flat footed, he’s likely throwing off of his back foot, and it’s rare to see him repeat the same throwing motion twice in a row, even when he’s operating from a clean pocket. His numbers a HYPER-INFLATED thanks to TT’s scheme. The Red Raiders run such a wide open spread system, most of time he’s got one or two WR’s running wide open and he’s rarely asked to throw his recievers open, or fit a pass into a tight window. I haven’t seen an FBS team throw as many screens, and/or high percentage passes as the Red Raiders have over the last couple seasons, further ingflating his numbers. Mahomes does strike me as more athletic than he first appears, but he’s not an instinctive scrambler by any means, and when he does extend plays, more often than not he’ll make a poor decision anyway, negating the work he does to extend the play in the first place.

        He’s about as big of a project as I’ve seen for a college QB prospect who’s getting as much attention in the lead up to the draft as Mahomes, and if I am an NFL HC or NFL QB coach, I’m leery of putting myself in a position to work with a QB who’s going to suck all of the oxygen away from the other QB’s on my roster.

        If the 49ers draft Mahomes, I am going to throw my remote control right through the center of my 4K Ultra HD screen!

        1. For a while I liked him. But… I’d rather pass now. I think he’s a longer project than we’d get value out of him at any reasonable round we selected him. And it’s big ‘if’ in whether the project bears fruit.

      2. Agree with your take on Mahomes Nick. He’s Kap v2.0 in my mind. (Cosell says most of his plays are “out of structure” which is jargon for playground ball). Obviously Webb raises a lot of questions because Mahomes beat him out. My bet is that wherever Webb goes he will end up more productive than Mahomes.

        1. Whine,
          “Out of structure” “which is jargon for playground ball” or is it jargon for Brett Favre?

          1. OC – I would say that Favre improvised when plays broke down and that it wasn’t a dominant part of his game. Mahomes went “out of structure” when he felt pressure that wasn’t there. Cosell said that evaluating him was difficult because so much of his work was “out of structure” (that’s his term). Some like Cosell, some don’t. All I know is that he watches a lot of film for a living and I doubt knowledgeable people would pay him for misinformation. I could be wrong about Mahomes but I’m no alone on the issue.

      3. I completely agree on his mechanicso… everything needs to be tightened up?
        As the YAC. Not sure I agree with that it’s not like he was throwing wide receiver screens all day… that happened more with Mitchell. One of Mahomes biggest issues was he was allergic to check downs.

    2. Sebnynah, let me know if you are interested in using my new avatar. Colin has been effectively ERASED for future consideration. I think you might find it’s use cathartic.

      1. Guess they are moving on, but if they think Hoyer is superior to Kaep, I will question their judgement.

        1. He is in the organization ;) Hoyer has a job and Kap does not so according to the definition Hoyer is superior.

          You meant to say that Kap’s football skills are superior but you didn’t state that, which is not correct grammatical structuring ;)

          1. Since Barkley took his number, I will also say that Kaep is superior to him, and expect Kaep to play in the league somewhere, and do better because his talent and accomplishments are far superior to both.

            KS may call Hoyer a quality QB, I will just say that he is not that interested in winning.

            1. That is a myopic remark. Every coach is interested in winning and just because they don’t adhere to your laz-y-boy recliner hypotheses does not mean that they are less inclined toward victory.

              Your become more and more like your departed nemesis every day…

              1. Departed nemesis? Hmm, maybe you think Kaep may go to the Cards and play the Niners twice a year, and he will become the nemesis that they will dread to face.

                No. I fully expect a team without a QB like the Texans to sign him, especially after Romo retired, but teams are just trying to lowball him. Still, even if he is not signed, once a team loses a QB due to injury, he will find a starting job.

                Go ahead and believe this new rookie coach when he says he does not want to waste time trying to utilize a QB with impressive skillsets because the other limited QBs cant do what Kaep can do. Sure sounds like he is giving up, and admits he is not competent enough to utilize a SB QB properly.

                KS sounds stubborn, just like when he decides to pass in the second half with a 25 point lead. To me, it was like the Pats deciding not to play left handed in the second half. KS may be touted as a QB guru, but on the biggest stage under the brightest lights, he wilted.

                If you are touting Barkley as superior to Kaep, I will question your football acumen, too. Just because Kaep does not have a starting job right now, does not mean he will continue to be black balled and lowballed. He will play, because other coaches want to win, and he will give his new team the best chance to win.

                Sheathing your most potent weapon is a good way to not try to win, and handing the weapon to an opponent is a good way to lose.

              2. No, I do not like to cut players on the team bus, stab players in the back, force the coaches to play favorites and players out of position. I abhor the ACL strategy.

                In fact, I am the antithesis of Baalke.

              3. You think your way is the only way and if people don’t follow your way, you dismiss them…who does that sound like?

                Your draft strategy consists of constantly trying to trade down and accumulate picks…who does that sound like?

                You know more than the coaches on the field, who does that sound like….?

              4. Now we’re back to jargon…sheathing weapons…

                Check the definition of narcissism Seb, and do so while looking in that mirror of yours. For fun, check the meaning of ‘gaslighting’ too…

            2. Sure Seb…KS isn’t all that interested–all that into–winning. Good mindset for a HC. I’m confident you’re curbing your biases here. KS not all that interested in winning. Guess Lynch isn’t either, eh?

              1. Well, lets see how the offseason has gone. First, Jed ran around with Wormtongue, and was getting dissed to his face. Ballard decided that he was not even going to entertain the notion to become GM.

                Then Grigson was fired, and all of a sudden, Ballard decides he did not want to work for the Niners, but now takes the Colts job.

                After a bunch of good candidates turn down Jed, he gets lucky, and Lynch saves the day. They have to wait until the SB, and KS flames out spectacularly, and loses in a heart breaking fashion. KS gets on board, and everyone jumps for joy, although both Lynch and KS have never been GM or HC before.

                Free agency was OK. They did sign a bunch of FAs, but missed out on elite players like Poe, Dante Hightower, Ingram, Zach Brown and Hankins.

                Now we have them preparing for the draft, and some posters think they walk on water, and will not tolerate any criticism.

                I was positive about Tomsula, but he was incompetent. I tried to be positive about Chip, but the team flamed out spectacularly because Baalke did not want to win.

                So pardon me if I do not bring out the rainbows and unicorns, and be like Grant who is talking about making the playoffs.

                I am just calling it like I see it, and will not swallow the bait, hook line and sinker.

                The one thing that does give me hope is Baalke was fired. If anything, Lynch will succeed because he will not sign players like Devey, and cut players on the team bus. Maybe KS will take mediocre QBs like Hoyer and Barkley, and make them better. Too bad he does not even want to try and utilize a SB QB properly.

                I still will question their will to win if they deprive themselves of a dual threat QB, because having multiple threats makes the defense have to defend against both the run and pass. That strategy is inherently superior to just having a pocket passer with no threat to run.

                So far, Lynch is working very hard. I hope he is also working smart.This draft is crucial, so he needs to hit a couple home runs. If he manages to trade back multiple times, he may be able to hit a grand slam.

              1. Idiots do not at any time cease to be idiots. The dunce cap is permanent. The antagonistic gibberish and stilted jargon are part of his narcissistic echo chamber. He’s a perpetual caricature of himself, incapable of seeing himself, and nothing will change. Probably best to take it for the preposterous slapstick that it is.

              2. East, I almost consider the Baalke comparison a slur, like accusing me to be a Raiders fan.

                I am nothing like Baalke, because I like Kaep, while Baalke hated Kaep.

                I liked Hayne, Baalke cut him on the team bus.

                I said that the Niners may not win another game if they keep starting Devey, but Baalke played his favorites

                I detested the ACL strategy, and that was Baalke’s signature ploy.

                Baalke liked to leak and smear. I do not do that. I will tell a person to his face that I am disgusted with him.

                Baalke went all emo, but I can endure the peanut gallery, and criticism runs off my back like water to a duck.

            3. What would be best for everyone is for you to start lecturing Shanny on QB’s, QB development and all things QB-right here on this blog-because NFL coaches peruse this blog for pearls of wisdom from…………………THE MIGHTY QUINN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  26. Blah, Blah, Blah … the air raid argument is bogus. Air Raid is a variation of the spread offense. Here is a list of NFL QBs that played in a spread offense in college. Davis Webb will be a successful QB – probably better than Goff – in the long run.

    Drew Brees
    Russell Wilson
    Phillip Rivers
    Cam Newton
    Ryan Tannehill
    Colin Kaepernick
    Ben Roethlesburger
    Alex Smith

    1. I wouldn’t say that exclusive experience running an Air-Raid offensive scheme is, in itself, a reason not to draft a QB. Like you say Nick, all of these young QB’s are, almost without exception, are running some form of a spread offensive attack. However, here is how I see it. It’s hard enough for these young QB’s to transition to NFL concepts. So when you add other deficiencies to the equation, like Mahome’s drastically below average mechanics.

      When Mahomes’ inability to repeat his arm slot and throwing motion regardless of pocket pressure (thanks in part due to lack of natural feel for throwing the football), poor decision making (reminiscent of Johnny Manziel), slow mental processing and every other red flag on display, add to one another in a way that compounds his deficiencies, the end result as an NFL prospect is a low floor-high risk prospect who doesn’t deserve to be mentioned in the same breath as Ben Rothlesburger, Drew Brees, Russell Wilson, or even Ryan Tannehill, IMO.

    2. SPread offense. Not Air Raid. They’re not the same. Don’t congflate it and think you have an argument.

      There is not one single successful Air Raid QB in the NFL. Not one. Zero. Zip. Nada. This is a complete list of Air Raid QBs to get to the NFL:

      Tim Couch, Kentucky
      Jared Goff*, Cal
      Brandon Weeden*, Oklahoma State
      Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M
      Kevin Kolb, Houston
      Geno Smith*, West Virginia
      John Beck, BYU
      Nick Foles*, Arizona <<<— The most successful Air Raid QB in NFL history to date.
      Josh Heupel, Oklahoma State
      Kliff Kingsbury, Texas Tech
      B.J. Symons, Texas Tech
      Case Keenum*, Houston
      Max Hall, BYU
      Dominique Davis, ECU
      Graham Harrell, Texas Tech
      Jared Lorenzen, Kentucky
      Nate Hybl, Oklahoma
      Jason White, Oklahoma
      Sonny Cumbie, Texas Tech
      Taylor Potts, Texas Tech

      Do you see a bunch of studs there? No, you don’t. You see one guy who MIGHT make it and a ton of failures, many of whom never made past ‘camp arm.’

      The Air Raid produces even more fundamentally flawed QBs than the spread. At least in the spread, many of those QBs are making half-field reads and going through progressions. Not in the Air Raid.

    3. The air raid offense is a very distinct version of the spread offense. And not all spread offenses are the same… some require the qb to make reads multiple reads and give the qb the ability to makes athe the LOS… the air raid does not.

      1. I hate typing on a cell… it makes me seem even less intelligent than I already am… sigh. Stupid people problems.

    1. Nick, I disagree. King Solomon Thomas would be a superior pick than Barnett.

      With 4.88 speed, he may be relentless, but he will never reach the QB. Speed kills, and Barnett is pedestrian.

  27. I may be in the minority here, but I think Frank Simpleton is going to be the best qb in this class 3 years from now. Intangibles off the chart, accuracy, and leadership.

  28. Biggest glaring weakness the Niners have by far is a dominant pass rusher. I’m talking 10-15 sacks. They haven’t had one for years. It wouldn’t matter if they could reincarnate the defensive backfield from the glory years. Remember, when they won all their Lombardi Trophy’s, they were dominant in all three levels, especially up front. In the pass happy NFL we have these days, it is imperative to put pressure consistently on the opposing QB without having to blitz seven or eight like they’ve been doing, with little to no success. Draft a friggin pass rusher, or two or it won’t matter how good the linebackers and backfield are. Let’s hope the rumors are true and Cleveland ops for Trubisky (hometown boy) and we can grab Garrett, otherwise I’d keep the number two and grab Solomon Thomas. Build the defense from the front to the back, not the other way around.

  29. OK, here’s an off-the-wall intuition coming to me. Some hints, rumors and clues leading me to believe one of the teams holding preliminary talks with SF about #2 is the Titans. Not sure their motivation or target, and no deal “likely” at this point; but there have been conversations.
    Many? Several? With other teams as well quite likely.

  30. Hmmm, I put up a mock with Christian Mccaffrey and Grant determines that he is one of 3 players to avoid.

    I have mocked Webb many times, and Grant says he is a player to avoid.

    Methinks Grant is trolling me. ;p

    Who are the 3 players that I think the Niners should avoid ?

    1. Mixon, who is so radioactive, he glows.
    2. Chad Kelly. At least Davis Webb, being the son of a coach, would never get in a shouting match with his coach.
    3. Any ACL player.

  31. QB




    1. lol. Mines far simpler at QB

      Trubisky. The rest have such huge flaws I don’t see the point.

      Kizer is Colin Kaepernick without the running to disguise his inept QB play. In short, he looks like QB Tarzan (has all the tools) but plays like QB Jane (wooden head).

      Mahomes and Webb are Air Raid messes. They’re multi-year projects just to see if they can do some of the fundamentals. Considering that not one Air Raid QB has ever developed into an NFL QB… I’ll pass.

      Watson’s arm makes Ponder (who washed out because of his weak arm) look like friggin Peyton Manning. NFL safeties and corner will likely eat him alive on the out routes.

  32. I would take Ross over McCaffrey if we go offense in the first. They can both return kicks but Ross is better at it. Ross is better in the slot. Ross is better on the outside. Ross has better hands, route running, tracking, catch radius. Of course Ross is faster and more explosive.

    McCaffrey is a better rushe. But he may struggle with that in the pros. I see Caff as a late 1st, early 2nd round luxury pick although he will likely go higher.

  33. You like Ross better than C. Davis #80?

    Here are mine:


    1) Trubisky – Currently the QB most ready to start, IMO.
    2) Kizer – Has the highest ceiling of any 2017 QB prospect.
    3) Watson
    4) Webb
    5) Peterman


    1) Fournette
    2) Mixon
    3) Cook
    4) McCaffrey
    5a) Kamara
    5b) Williams


    1) C. Davis – All-Pro potential.
    2) Ross – Elite excelleration and top end speed with great hands as well. As a bonus, he’s a dynamic kick returner.
    3) Williams
    4) Godwin
    5a) Jones
    5b) Smith-Schuster


    1) Howard – A slightly smaller “move” tight end and hybrid slot receiver in the mold of J. Graham.
    2) Engram
    3) Shaheen
    4) Njoku
    5a) Butt
    5b) Everett

    1. I like both Ross and Davis a lot. Much more than Williams, who I think is borderline 2nd tier.

      I favor Ross because he is a threat to score whenever he gets the ball. I see him as Antonio Brown with record setting speed. As a returner I see Ross as Desean Jackson with record setting speed.

      He is willing to go over the middle and excels at slants and crossing routes. He can run every route and makes precise cuts. He has great body control and tracking. A perfect fit in a WCO.

      1. Agreed #80.

        If Ross can stay healthy, he’ll be a very, very dangerous weapon. He’s obviously a dynamic kick returner and quintessential vertical threat! You know you’re an incredible talent when your coach plugs you in at CB, just to keep you on the field (1 INT, 2 pass breakups)! The difference between Ross, and say … Tavon Austin is that Ross has been effective outside the numbers (like Brandon Cooks), where Austin is ineffective.

        You aren’t at all concerned about his knees (2 meniscus tears in his right knee, torn ACL in his left)?

        I do worry about his health though, not because of his small stature per se (officially 188 lbs), but his history of knee injuries.

  34. 1. Solomon Thomas – A tweener with a questionable motor. No good spot for him on the D-Line unless we’ve given up on Armstead or Buckner. We have needs at other position groups.

    2. Deshaun Watson – Fool’s gold.

    3. Reuben Foster – Good sideline to sideline but slow to process plays and not great in coverage. He will be abused in the NFL. Might turn out to be a decent player. But not Patrick Willis good. More like above-average MLB good.

              1. Well, I haven’t seen evidence of a wrecking ball. Good player yes but no wrecking ball. Overhyped player for sure…

              2. King Solomon is able to play anywhere from a 3T all the way to a 9T, and he can stand up or have his hand in the grass.

                Nick Wagoner asked an NFC scout who has taken a look at Thomas and asked if he would make sense playing the “Leo” for the Niners. The scout told him he could “totally see that” as a fit for Thomas and went on to say he could envision Thomas as a 3T, a Leo or even a left defensive end in a 40 front. Just because King Solomon’s pass rushing numbers might not jump off the page, this scout believes Thomas is at his best as “an explosive penetrator” and spoke highly of his instincts and “super high” motor.

                King Solomon has a high floor and an even higher ceiling. He’s a weapon of mass disruption….

                “He’s easily among [the] top 10 players in this draft,” the scout said.

              3. I think a lot of people will look foolish if they pick this young man. He is a one year wonder who had a great bowl game.

              4. I think a lot of people will look foolish if they pick this young man.

                More like 99% of them.

              5. When I consider the verb “penetrator”, edge rusher doesn’t come to mind. In fact, Thomas did his best work for Stanford as a “disruptive penetrator” on the interior of Stanfords DL.

                Here are some quotes from around the NFL that echo my concerns:

                – “I like him (Thomas) better as an interior guy in a 4-3 scheme as he matches up better with smaller guards rather than tackles.”

                – “After watching and re-watching his (Thomas’) 2016 game film, I’m not sure he’s as much of an EDGE guy as he is on the interior.”

                – “He (Thomas) frequently stays stuck to those (OT blocks), and gives up containment far too often. To be an edge player in the NFL, he will have to correct that. However, he’s better as an inside player, anyway.”

                – “At the combine, a general manger of a NFC playoff team said Thomas should go in the top-24 picks, but they didn’t have him as a high first-rounder. Another AFC playoff team graded him as a late first-round pick. The issue that is coming up the most with Thomas is that many teams feel has TWEENER size, listed at 6-foot-3, 273 pound.” One NFC general manager picking outside of the top 10 said this of Thomas, “Many teams view him (Thomas) as a poor-man’s Aaron Donald, however Donald is heavier, has a lower center of gravity, and is more explosive.

                – “Thomas was overwhelmingly used as an interior 1 gap penetrator in Stanford’s defense, which typically utilized an odd front. Opposing offensive lines made sure to combo block him on downhill runs and passing plays that involved a deep drop or a full field read from the quarterback. And his lack of size for a true defensive tackle was exposed on most of those combo blocks. Thomas’ experience as a defensive tackle comes with his relative aforementioned inexperience as a true edge rusher.”

                – A director of scouting for an AFC team called Stanford DL Solomon Thomas a “damn good player”. However, he directly followed up this with another: “I don’t think he gets drafted as early as you do (NFL Media’s Lance Zierlein) because he’s not big enough for inside and he’s not as long as you like on the outside,”

                – “Not a twitched-up athlete, and lacks the elite first step off the edge. Does not display natural bend when running the arc on his outside rush. Struggles with change of direction in space. Can get engulfed by double-teams, struggles to maintain his ground at the POC.”

                – “I’m not trying to take anything away from him, I just think the buzz and everyone now mocking him at No. 2 overall seems a little extreme. Especially because I don’t view him as an outside defensive end.”

                – “If I had to add to the concerns about his ideal fit (lacks ideal weight for the interior, and length attacking from the edge), I would point out that Thomas is unable to do a whole lot against double teams, and when the quarterback takes off, Thomas has no shot at catching him from behind. His (Thomas’) small hands show up on tape as well as he loses his grip while attempting to tackle far more often than you would like to see.”

                Some players are hard to definatively project heading into the NFL. Personally, I feel like I have a pretty good grasp on Solomon Thomas’ skill set and his ideal fit for the NFL. I know for a fact that there are many top scouts around the NFL who feel like Thomas is versatile enough to play in a number of different schemes, though there is a fairly strong consensus around NFL circles that Thomas’ did his best work in college on the interior and that will likely continue to be the case moving forward.

                The most common player comp for Thomas around NFL circles has been Aaron Donald, with a lot of people going as far as to call Thomas a “poor man’s Aaron Donald.” However, I personally think that’s a bit of a stretch. I recently referenced BR’s MATT MILLER’S 2017 big board in which Miller had Thomas listed 45th. This was an honest mistake on my part because this ranking was outdated. That said, in some ways it still validates my point. Thomas was listed outside of the first round on a lot of draft boards up until as recently as early December. It took a strong finish to the season combined with a very solid NFL combine before Thomas’ really started to grab everyone attention, and I am always leery when I see a sudden rise like Thomas’ has experienced.

                It’s clear to me that Thomas is likely going to eventually find his niche at the NFL level and develop into one of the better defenders in this draft class, but I don’t see a clear cut, defined position for Solomon Thomas to come in and dominate right away. I think he’ll likely find his greatest success as a penetrating interior DL, but he’s going to need to add an additional 10-15 lbs in order to do so. And the other thing that seems clear to me is that Thomas’ is not ideally suited to dominate the C gap between the RT and TE and get after the QB. Thomas lacks the ideal physical characteristics you like to see for a 6/7 Tech. Though Thomas has some physical attributes in common with say …. a guy like Michael Bennett, he’s not nearly as sure of a tackler as Bennett (maybe because his hands are so much smaller) nor is he quite as twitchy or quick out of his stance as Bennett. And if you compare Thomas to a guy like Cameron Wake, you don’t see anything close to the quickness and fluidity combined with agility (dip & bend) that makes Wake a special player.

                Solomon Thomas currently sits at #11 on my board.

              6. Its funny. Some people read that article and come away thinking he isn’t that good. I came away appreciating just how dominant he could be. As White himself points out, there were a LOT of plays where he created havoc but didn’t finish.

  35. 1. Solomon Thomas…he is a small 3T but could add weight. Would have to trade Armstead or Buckner for him to get on the field.

    2. Reuben Foster…benefited from a stack roster at Ala. Would be more productive with Jets,Bills, or Texans.

    3. Hooker\Lattimore…like Ala DBs, they haven’t panned out

    2. Reuben Foster…

          1. Let’s put it this way …;… Solomon Thomas is no Michael Bennett. If you are keeping track, Bennett came out of college as a much more savvy pass rusher, with better ( and much more clever) technique. Bennett weighed in at the combine 19 lbs heavier than Thomas, with longer arms and much bigger hands.

            In fact, Thomas’ college tape doesn’t scream “LEO” to me whatsoever. He’s more of an undersized (& poor man’s) Aaron Donald, and has done all of his best work on Stanford’s interior.

            Aaron Lynch on the other hand seems perfectly suited to play Leo if he get;s back to 170ish. In fact, I think it’s a much better fit for him than OLB. The transition to a 4-3 scheme and a simpler role could help him rebound from an injury/suspension-marred 2016 season in which he managed only 13 tackles and 1.5 sacks in seven appearances. Still only 24 years old and listed at 6-foot-6, 270 lbs (hopefully), Lynch should be able to make the transition to defensive end with applomb! Recent first-round selections Arik Armstead (2015) and DeForest Buckner (2016) figure to provide a stronger interior pass-rushing presence that will make life a bit easier for Lynch and the team’s other outside rushers. Lynch is a very strong kid, deceptively strong in fact, and has superior length compared to S. Thomas, with a giant wingspan (34″) compared to Thomas (33″), combined with huge mitts (10 1/4″) compared to Thomas’ (9 3/8″). Lynch can disengage better with his long arms and corral ball carriers better with his huge paws. Lynch also ran a much more impressive 1.52 sec split at his pro day, compared to Thomas’ 1.63 sec, which indicates Lynch has a much quicker (and longer) first step.

          2. While I’m not opposed to Solomon… I don’t care to draft a player based upon the base Defense consideringredients they are only in the base December about 30%.
            I care more about his value in the Nicole or Dime packages.

    1. Interesting that you want the Niners to avoid first round picks. Every player who is a first round pick has a good chance to start.

      Maybe the players to avoid may be the later round picks with red flags.

  36. Brent Sobleski‏ @brentsobleski 20m
    Brent Sobleski Retweeted Doug Farrar
    Mahomes is further along and liked by NFL coaches far more than many realize.

    1. Apparently Nick and Grant haven’t gotten the memo out to NFL coaches and scouts that they’re wasting their time on Air Raid QB’s. Hmmm, wonder why they continue to do so?

  37. (1) Ismael Zamora – dog beater
    (2) J Mixon-violent action toward a woman
    (3) Tim Willams -character concerns ,multiple failures on drug tests

    1. I’ve gone out of my way to find out what they are but apparently Carroll Phillips has some nasty off the field issues too but nobody will say what they are.

      “sources say that off-the-field issues are hurting Phillips in his draft reports. Teams didn’t elaborate on the nature of the off-the-field issues.

      I’ve googled it a couple times and all I see are references to the issues but there’s never any elaboration on what he actually did.

      1. We’ll find out during draft proceedings with another timely video of him stealing an old ladies purse….

  38. Every Air Raid QB ever drafted has failed. That’s about 20 of them. So far the best of them is Nick Foles.

    Nick Foles, I might remind you, is a failure.

    Now that was true of all Tedford pseudo-WCO* QBs until Rogers. Rodgers sat on the bench three years under Favre and with the best QB coach in the NFL (at that time). All the rest, before and after, have failed.

    *It looked like the WCO, but it was one-read, check-down to back or run. Not a real WCO where you make 3 reads then check-down to back/run.

    1. Bradford and Garappolo are not seen as failures and they both played in systems that were very similar to the Air Raid.

      Relative to non-AR QB’s taken there have been very few taken high in the draft so to say each one has failed is a fairly relative statement when you’re only talking about less then a half dozen players. When you consider the few Air Raid QB’s that have been taken high in the draft you’re talking about a small enough sample size that the failure can be pinned just as much on the player’s shortcomings then the systems. There have been two Air Raid Qb’s taken #1. One was a bust, one didn’t look very good in his first season. Two players. Does two equal a trend? In the top 100 draft picks there are only 6 notable Air Raid QB selections. 3 of which are still on NFL teams competing for starting jobs.

      You’re talking about such small numbers that the failures in these cases can’t truly discern system from human.

        1. Any other team except Miami and I’d say absolutely impossible they do something that dumb.

    1. I would jump for joy if the Niners could get pick numbers 12 and 33 for pick number 2, but the Browns would need to include either pick number 52 or 65, along with a 2018 second round pick to balance it out on the TVC.

      In my mock scenario, I would have the Browns give up 12, 52 and 3 later round picks so they could keep a pick at the beginning of every round along with the number 2 pick. That would be fair to the Browns while also benefiting the Niners, who need bodies.

  39. So Soloman Thomas has been the favorite mock draft pick at #2. The team has both draft capital and a very large amount of cap space.

    Sheldon Richardson is available. If you’re a big fan of procuring a defensive lineman with the team’s first pick, why not save the draft capital for another position and instead use cap space to procure Richardson. The one thing I’m not clear on is if Thomas can play the Leo. If he can’t and the desire is still to procure a DL guy, why not go after Richardson and use #2 for another position or trade down (in this trade down there’s no concern about Thomas being selected by another team).

    I’m not saying we should do this, but I’m not clear on why we shouldn’t under the assumption that Thomas would be the first pick otherwise.

        1. Put him in the type of scheme that Lovie Smith used to utilize, and he could be a perennial Pro Bowler.

    1. Richardson has a motor problem. He’s been in decline since 2014 because he just doesn’t put in the effort. He’s got character/egal problems. He’s been suspended twice (once for drugs) and once because he lead the police on a 143 MPH chase.

      Which is why he’s available. And why not one single team has contacted the Jets to take that head-ache off their hands despite him being on the trade market since March.

      1. Fair points on Richardson. Before Hankins was signed by Indy a similar question could be posed for him (my understanding is that he has played both NT and 3T)

  40. From Kevin Jones twitter today

    KJ – “My understanding: 49ers aren’t just gonna take a QB to take one at 34. They have a guy they like. If he’s not there, may wait until round 4”

    Q: “So for sure no QB at 2?”

    KJ – “unless there (sic) fooling us all, my understanding is that Fournette more likely than QB at 2”

    I think its lying season. Jones never said outright it was a team source. Could be projecting based on existing rumors + Niners most likely interests.

    I don’t see either Fournette or quarterback at pick 2, but can’t rule it out.

    Most interesting part (if true) is that they have a specific quarterback in mind for pick 34.

      1. Oh boy… Even his coach said it was mistake for him to declare early. And coaches rarely say anything like that. It’s so not what coaches do. Yet…

      2. Would be my guess too based on Lynch comments.

        It was a Baalke trait to draft players based on their best season, not necessarily their most recent. That would be Kizer.

        34 is a big commitment, especially considering the depth of the draft. Kizer at 34 could signal the 49ers intention to skip Cousins or first round rookie in 2018.

      3. The more quarterbacks taken in the first, the more likely a “faller” will drop to 34 or reasonable trade up range.

        The Niners could be floating interest in Kizer to spook the Bears (36) or the Jets (39) into jumping into the late first.

          1. Lots of players I prefer over Kizer at 34. Lots of good choices at CB, TE, Edge.

            Possibly WR if one of Davis Ross, Williams fell to to late 20’s for a trade-up.

  41. Oh, Aaron Hernandez was just acquitted of the Double Murder on the re-trial. He’s not going to walk free though as he’s still serving life without parole for the murder someone else.

  42. Crazy notion #1235.02

    John Lynch has a close relationship with Elway, and praised Paxton Lynch in an interview a few months ago. If the Broncos are souring on Paxton Lynch, could the Niners trade for him?

    1. An outside the box notion, but I’m concerned he couldn’t be more of a challenge to Siemian towards the end of the season.

  43. This team is probably gonna take a couple years to be even 8-8..It will be remembered as the great Baalke purge…Only one I dont agree with the author on is Redmond..He was supposed to be a late first early second pick,but after he was sopposed to be ready for training camp and then never contributing last year…Im starting to wonder if that knee is not coming back on schedule..well see

    1. The Browns didn’t throw the last game of the season for the right to be wishy-washy with the 1 pick. They choose Garrett, or use him for major trade bait.

  44. sebnynah
    April 13, 2017 at 9:41 pm

    Guess they are moving on, but if they think Hoyer is superior to Kaep, I will question their judgement.

    April 14, 2017 at 8:04 am

    He is in the organization ;) Hoyer has a job and Kap does not so according to the definition Hoyer is superior.

    You meant to say that Kap’s football skills are superior but you didn’t state that, which is not correct grammatical structuring

    Cassie Baalke

    April 14, 2017 at 10:28 am

    Now we’re back to jargon…sheathing weapons…

    Check the definition of narcissism Seb, and do so while looking in that mirror of yours.


    April 13, 2017 at 7:20 pm

    Lol Tom, that’s why I asked the question way back when about how does someone claim they were correct in picking draft picks! Is it an accumulation of all your mocks, or is it your final mock just before the draft.

    Juanhunglo: Seb does this every year….Posts his thousand and one drafts & hopes the niners pick one of his players.
    Once he detects his drafted player on their roster, Seb floods this site with endless boasts about his draft genius.

  45. Seb,

    Not wanting his house to incinerate, your neighbor avoided your help and doused that fire your sparking chainsaw motor created.

    Grant and the 49ers are avoiding your draft picks like the plague—(look how your picks, Jarryd Hayne or Kap worked out)….Proof that your drafts are subpar, unless you post one thousand of them and the 49ers by shear percentages, draft one of your players.


    April 13, 2017 at 10:09 pm

    Hmmm, I put up a mock with Christian Mccaffrey and Grant determines that he is one of 3 players to avoid.

    I have mocked Webb many times, and Grant says he is a player to avoid.

    Methinks Grant is trolling me. ;p

  46. If the Browns shock the NFL draft with their No. 1 pick, what happens next?

    The working assumption for months has been that the Browns would use the No. 1 pick on Myles Garrett.

    And then, a mere two weeks out from the 2017 draft, came this from ESPN’s Adam Schefter: “At No. 1, they are deciding between Myles Garrett, the presumptive No. 1 pick, and Mitchell Trubisky…”

    It’s clear that the Browns (correctly) do not feel all that confident about their current QB group: Cody Kessler, Kevin Hogan and Brock Osweiler.

    2) What would Trubisky going No. 1 mean for the 49ers?

    This spins back to the point Schefter made: Quarterbacks tend to be valued differently during the draft (at least by teams without a starter) than any other position. How many positional bonus points would a prospect need to leapfrog Garrett, in the eyes of the Browns and/or 49ers?

    The 49ers could float Garrett to any number of teams—pick a franchise within striking distance and it could use the Texas A&M product.

    However, it seems rather obvious the 49ers should race to the podium for Garrett if the Browns pass.

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