Trent Baalke’s pattern with running backs

Trent Baalke has a pattern when it comes to drafting running backs.

One year Baalke spends a second-round pick on a running back, and the next year he spends a fourth round pick on a running back. Then he repeats the pattern.

In 2011, Baalke drafted Kendall Hunter in the fourth round.

In 2012, Baalke drafted LaMichael James in the second round.

In 2013, Baalke drafted Marcus Lattimore in the fourth round.

In 2014, Baalke drafted Carlos Hyde in the second round.

If this pattern holds up, Baalke will draft a running back in the fourth round this year. Running backs who might be available in the fourth round are Jeremy Langford, T.J. Yeldon, David Cobb, Mike Davis, Javorius Allen and Cameron Artis-Payne.

Do you think Baalke will draft one of those running backs? If so, which one? If not, why not?

This article has 304 Comments

    1. Many think Hyde’s the man–can’t miss. We really don’t know until he’s #1. What we do know is Gore has 8-straight 1000 yd. seasons, is a genius at finding a seam you can’t see, even by. pressing slow motion replay, and doing so with 8,9,10,even 11 men in the box! As an ex-running back I can tell you that’s no easy. What I can tell you is the difference between the two–VISION, ANTICIPATION OF BLOCKING COMBINATIONS BEFORE THEY HAPPEN–something you can’t teach. Also, in the hole he has lightening quick burst with shiftiness so defenders rarely square him up. Unless Baalke finds another of those he will lose his job in two years because it’s a run based offense. Hiring Adam Henry, LSU and Rondald Curry as (WR) coaches, both with some credentials shows Baalke is serious there, and could move up in the draft.

      1. However, if the 49ers don’t move up, being a run based offense as Baalke said during his nationally televised press conference (we’re going to run the
        ball) I thing we’ll trade back in Rd. 1, pick up an extra 2nd and 3rd round pick, take an elite running back, late 1st round, and a WR early second round (If one of the top 4 receivers is unavailable at 15).

      2. Good post Tom. What some fans don’t understand that most of the 49er’s success as a run first team was predicated on Gore’s unusual combination of skills that you just can not replace. We saw some of the results as some of those skill began to erode with age. Take Gore out of the equation and can the 49er’s be carried by their run game? It takes a group of RB’s to replace what Frank used to offer. Unfortunately they cannot be on the field at the same time.

    2. ARTICLE: “Trent Baalke’s Last Chance,” Website: NINER NOISE
      by Doulas Totten

      Google exact title

      Synopsis: Article explains why Jed York may have to swallow his pride and fire Trent Baalke.

  1. I think your pattern might just be a coincidence, but I like Langford. He could be an excellent compliment to Hyde.

  2. He draft Anthony Dixon in the 6th round in 2010.

    I don’t know what round he’ll take a RB, that will likely depend on what happens in FA, but a high probability he’ll draft a RB at some point.

  3. I like Langford but doubt he lasts until the 4th Round. You could probably get a guy like Dyer in the 6th or 7th round which would be a great value….

  4. Small sample extrapolation. As with all the choices, much will depend on FA losses and gains before the draft.

    1. Though it’s too early to tell, we’ll have to see if Baalke drafts a running back with ruined knees to see if Grant’s theory of “patterns” holds up.

  5. Niners need a running in the least way,they need on the off and def line ,it starts up front then we get are playmakers.

    1. The Niners need a scat back they can rely on. Hunter doesn’t qualify after all of his injuries.

        1. I don’t think so. He’s past his prime. A young RB who has fresher legs and has taken fewer hits would be better.

          1. i think they need a WR that can work out of the back field much like Seattle started to do with Harvin

              1. They did it a couple of times. I agree that they do need to use it more. Id like to see hand offs and passes in the backfield. Not completely sold on Ellington yet either. Hopefully he’ll improve this year with adjusting to the league and more playing time. If they can find an explosive WR that they can utilize in the backfield in the draft, then im all for it.

  6. If the 49ers re-sign Gore then no I don’t believe they’ll sign a RB. This opinion is heavly contingent upon the idea that both Hyde and Hunter are still seen as long term players. If they have doubts about either then I could see a RB in the late rounds.

    If they don’t re-sign Gore OR if they don’t have a lot of faith in Hyde as an every down back then it’s possible they pull the trigger on a guy like David Johnson in the 4th.

    1. Hyde is an absolute beast! If they draft a RB its cause hunter is coming off another ACL injury not cause of Hyde. They should draft another RB for the simple fact of the injuries for that position. Gore is on his way out. He expects to get four mil a year, he is not worth it. Great niner but not at that price. Plus he wants to be the starter and frankly we need younger legs back there to counter a defense like seatle.

    2. I have doubts Hunter remains the same player after an ACL and an achilles. They need depth at RB. A day 3 pick should be sufficient unless a great value presents itself.

    3. I have no doubt the 49ers will sign a RB in FA, whether it is Gore or someone else.

      Even so, I would be very surprised if they don’t draft a RB at some point.

    1. in general and without a scout’s personal knowledge of a player’s skills, I (and some academic/analytically studies) do not advocate trading up under almost any circumstances.

      1. Obviously Baalke doesn’t subscribe to that. I’m not in favor of mortgaging the future, but moving up 2 spots to jump Miami and draft Parker could be worth it (if the price is right, of course).

    2. I think they would take Armstead at DT from Oregan instead of an OL. They might trade down to 20 to take him and then pick up an OL with the newly aquired pick.
      I don’t see a scenario that has SF moving anywhere but backwards in the first round of the draft.

    3. If we get Scherff at #15, my fat ass will be doing cartwheels!
      Scherff is a future All-Pro and my Draft crush for this year.
      I seriously doubt he falls to #15 though…

        1. Someone always does.
          Intrigue is what makes it such a blast!
          I don’t Scherff slides that far.
          I don’t even see him falling out of the top 10.
          But again…Scherff at #15 = fat ass doing cartwheels.
          I don’t how to do cartwheels…but I’ll learn.
          If there’s anything Iowa knows, it’s linemen.

              1. Oops!
                Iggster caught my major faux pas.
                Hayden was most definately NOT an Al Davis muff as Al was not around to do the muffing.
                Sorry Iggster and sorry Al (RIP).
                I will bear the mark of the loser for the remainder of the day (raises thumb and forefinger to forehead in the shape of an ‘L’).

              1. Then Al repeated the same dumb mistake with Hayden in ’13.
                Speed matters.
                Who cares if they have the skills to play the position…?
                I miss Al.

              2. I think a lot of people had Hayden ranked high in that draft.

                How did he play last year? Is he improving from his rookie year?

              3. He actually has a chance for a breakout season:

                “It’s time for young cornerbacks to step up: McKenzie made it clear the Raiders are done with the parade of veteran stop gaps at cornerback. The yearly parade of new, short-term starters is over, or, at least, McKenzie hopes. He said 2014 starters, Tarell Brown and Carlos Rogers, will hit the market. They were both signed to one-year deals last year. McKenzie wants to see youngsters DJ Hayden, TJ Carrie and Keith McGill all take the next step. A cornerback will likely be added, but Oakland wants to give the young cornerbacks a chance to show they can be the long-term answer. I like the idea. All three can make an impact. “

              4. He did look better toward the end of last season.
                Maybe he’s just finally getting healthy.
                His stats so far for his career are subpar though.
                His ball skills are lacking, to say the least.
                It’ll be interesting to see what they ultimately do with him.

                This season will be very telling.

              5. {This post should be here}
                Iggster caught my major faux pas.
                Hayden was most definately NOT an Al Davis muff as Al was not around to do the muffing.
                Sorry Iggster and sorry Al (RIP).
                I will bear the mark of the loser for the remainder of the day (raises thumb and forefinger to forehead in the shape of an ‘L’).

  7. I guess it depends on how they view Hyde as a possible primary back (of committee) and how viable Gore is if he does return (how well Hunter returns from injury is an unknown at this point I suppose). If running back is a position of need, then possibly the 2nd or 3rd Round or 4th or 5th if it’s simply a best player available depth pick.

  8. Who was the running back that we had during preseason last year that we let go in the final cuts and I think went to Cleveland? Was it Glenn Winston or something like that. It was disappointing to let him go only to then get rid of James several weeks later. Maybe we could bring him back.

      1. Thanks, George. I just checked and he’s currently listed on their 2015 roster. I can’t seem to find out if he is on the practice squad.

          1. Cutting Winston to be able to buy time with LMJ was another example of bad planning by the FO/coaching staff. I think they might have over valued LMJ actual value hoping he would either transform from straw into gold overnight or perhaps they were thinking they could trade him for something. Not the first time they cut promising players to keep an over values vet.

    1. Yeldon is smooth. Hard to judge Alabama RBs though. Not a great recent history aside from Lacy.

      How about Karlos Williams? Where does he go? Great size/speed combo.

        1. He runs too high for my taste(yes even more so than Hyde). But he has good speed and has a real smooth deceptive style.

  9. If Gore and the FO can meet half-way then I would love bringing him back. Does anyone know what FG is asking in terms of monies and time?

    I’m sure that Gore will have an open ear for any possible suitors and if he finds something that fits his asking price and time he should pounce on it.

    Even if FG returns, the 49ers still need to have at least 4 tier RB depth on the roster (at least through TC). We don’t know if KHunt is ready and or if he can physically hold out for a full season. B.Miller and unproven Millard are more FB types. We need another speed type RB to compliment Hyde.

    Josh Robinson is my sleeper as a RB, and he would likely be available in the 4th and possibly 5th rd.

        1. “Niners are $6.9 million over the cap.”

          Only if you add up all 63 players they have under contract. As you know the key number to watch during the offseason is the Top 51 number. Based on that they are currently ~ $142K under the cap.

            1. Maybe the primary reason we keep seeing different numbers is because those quoting the over/under on the salary cap are using different amounts for the 2015 salary cap (i.e. 140 million versus 143 million, etc.)

            2. cubus,

              Yes, those would be more accurate numbers. The number I got was from overthecap, but I did not factor in the roll over.

              Either way, the numbers Grant and ESPN have cited today are a little off.

    1. Nice call AES,kinda shocked at the lack of love for Duke Johnson here still think he warrants serious consideration,

  10. Baalke is trying to sign that rugby player, Jarryd Hayne. If he accomplishes that Gore is Not coming back for sure and the team doesn’t draft a RB until 6th or 7th round.
    Quite honestly there is simply no money to compete this year. The team is going to have to restructure contracts to just sign rookie class. This might be a year the team trades away picks for next season moving down rather than up.
    Third toughest schedule in the league for 2015, let the Fire Baalke hash tags begin.

    1. Matt, first of all if they sign Haynes it will be for dirt cheap cause he has never played football before. See Lawrence okoye who is a practice squad player. Second there is no need to spend at all this off season. Just focus on the draft this year and in 2016 there projected to have over 30 mil in cap space. The big free agency pick up for the niners is health!

      1. Ck I agree with you. My post was meant to imply the only RB option to sign is a league minimum signing of an unproven player because there simply is no money left this season.

        1. All good Matt. Draft another runner and maybe pick up a Ryan Matthews dirt cheap. If gore wants 4 mil a year(rumor) he can take that salary somewhere else. It’s the Hyde show now.

          1. Whoa!
            Not sure if I’m undertanding you correctly, Elite?
            Are you sugesting that Gore isn’t worth $4 mil?
            If so, I beg to difer…BIG TIME.

            1. You don’t pay a number 2 back 4 mil a year. Hyde will and should be the number 1 back. If gore wants to come back as a number 2 and take 2 mil I’m all for it.. You should not pay him 4 mil when you can find good runners throughout the draft.

              1. While he’ll most likely give up a few more carries to Hyde, he won’t be the backup.
                He’s in great shape, his skills haven’t diminished in any meaningful way, he’s not coming off of any significant injuries and he’s not really injury prone.
                He’s still a 1000 yd back and can pick up blitzes better than any other back in the league which of course, must make CK pretty happy.
                I really like Hyde.
                But if you have a player like Gore already on your team…a career player no less…who knows your offense like the back of his hand…who isn’t asking for an arm and a leg in the way of compensation…you hold onto him.
                $4 mil is well worth what he does for that offense, some may even call it cheap.
                I think they give him a two-year deal for like $6 mil and Hyde transitions to full-time duty next year.

              2. Agreed,
                The sooner the team moves on from Gore the better off they will be. Gore’s speed is gone. One thing that makes defenses not want to stack the box for the length of the field, is the potential to give up long runs should the running back break through the initial wall. Gore hasn’t had that ability for a few years.
                I love everything he has done for the team but at this stage the niners have to move on.

    2. If they sign Hayne he’ll either be on the PS this year or he will be a specialist PR/KR (or simply cut). The chances of him playing much RB are remote.

      Baalke will sign a FA vet RB on the cheap, and draft a RB.

  11. If Baalke is dumb enough to let Frank “The Tank” go ..
    (and considering the current cap situation) .. it
    just might be economically feasible to sign
    LMJ …

    u-hhh .. that is .. IF ..
    he’s willing to pay the Niners 4 mil / yr
    for the privilege

      1. I don’t see his name listed on the 2015 Dolphins roster on So I guess that means he is not under contract.

            1. MWNiner: I consider you somewhat of a “savant” when it comes to suggesting off-the-wall pickups :-) All kidding aside, I really like your suggestion to go after T.Brown. But I’m not a LMJ fan.

              1. Cubus ..

                Thanx for the compliment, but .. like you ..
                I ain’t an LMJ fan, either …

                As I mentioned earlier .. I wasn’t serious
                about signing LMJ .. it was just my tiny attempt
                at a little humor .. however ..
                it seemed to go over like
                a fart in a space-suit

    1. Jarryd Hayne was attracted to the Lions as a result of meeting Reggie Bush when he visited Australia. I wonder if this will impact on Hayne’s decision to sign with the Lions or another team?

    2. He was my man crush out of college. In fact I promised if I ever saw him and Kim Kardashian together, I’d probably ignore her just to chat with him. I freaking rooted against my team to draft him…..

  12. From PFT: Baltimore will not consider DGB:

    “Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome said on Tuesday that anyone with a domestic-abuse background won’t be on their draft board.
    Missouri WR Dorial Green-Beckham had been a popular player mocked to the Ravens at No. 26 overall. Baltimore will have a monster need for receiver help if it can’t re-sign free agent Torrey Smith. Steve Smith Sr. will turn 36 in May, and the club just released KR/WR Jacoby Jones on Wednesday, leaving Kamar Aiken and Marlon Brown as next in line. DGB may not even be around at 26th overall.”

    I can’t imagine that this would be misdirection on the part of the Ravens.

      1. You think the Ravens might be a draft trade candidate? Trade chart suggest that we would receive their first and 2nd round pick (1050 points versus 1020 points)

        1. I think it is more likely Baalke trades up then down. If he stands pat there should be a good chance a very good prospect is available at #15, at a position the 49ers could do with (WR, CB, OLB, DL, OL).

            1. Correct, well done Prime.

              Trading up to #12 or higher was a bad idea last year because it would have cost a lot and they had a lot of future needs to address with guys coming off contract this year.

              This year, because they drafted a lot of players last year, have a lot of those needs covered, depth wise. They could do with some impact guys, but really don’t need a lot of depth guys. So yeah, I think it is more likely Baalke will trade up than down. Though I don’t think they will trade up if it costs more than a third to do so.

              1. Using the draft value chart as a guide, our 1st and 3rd would move us up from 15th to 11th. That would be Minnesota. The Browns have two first round picks (12 and 19) , so they might be more willing, but I really don’t know what their needs are.

              2. I think Brodie has mentioned previously this year might once again prove a difficult one to move up in without giving up a lot. Baalke may want to move up, but as I said I don’t think he’d be willing to give up a lot to do so.

                It will be interesting to see how it plays out.

                I do think there is a good chance a high quality player falls to #15, which is why I don’t think a trade down is that likely. I think Baalke would rather take the quality than quantity this year. The question is whether Baalke will like the players that are available at #15 – if he doesn’t then sure, move down if you can.

              3. Our 1st (15) and 3rd for the Browns 1st (12) and 4th (possibly 5th). Baalke might want to do this if he wants one of the big three WRs (most likely Parker). The last of the big three is projected to go in the 11 to 15 range in some of the mocks that I’ve seen.

              4. If DeVante Parker is available at #12, do the Browns pass him up (knowing Gordon is out of the year) or take the trade? A WR is probably their biggest need aside from QB, so not convinced they would, given they also pick at #19.

              5. The Browns also have something like 30 to 40 million in cap space. They may decide to go after a big name WR in free agency. We should be able to get a better feel for this possibility after free agency.

              6. This year more than ever they need depth and impact players.
                They will need depth at ILB with Bowman and Willis coming off surgeries, the secondary with possible UFA departures Cox and Cully, RB with Hunter coming off 2 major injuries and Gore a UFA.
                Impact at WR and TE.
                So yeah last year and every year every teams needs both. But with the abundance of picks last year, this year,it made perfect sense to trade up in one of the best WR class in NFL history(possibly)
                Bad move by Baalke

              7. “They will need depth at ILB with Bowman and Willis coming off surgeries, the secondary with possible UFA departures Cox and Cully, RB with Hunter coming off 2 major injuries and Gore a UFA.”

                I guess it is a good thing that last year they drafted 3 CBs (4 if you include Ward as a CB), Borland and Hyde last year then. Not to mention two 3rd round OL to mitigate the loss of Iupati, and an OLB to mitigate the likely loss of Brooks and maybe Skuta.

                Wouldn’t have been able to draft all those guys if they trade up last year.

              8. “4 if you include Ward as a CB”

                I’ve been thinking about positions drafted. The conclusion I’ve come to is that when you look back to review the positions drafted, it shouldn’t be the position the player played in college, but the position the player was drafted to play by the NFL team. Ward was drafted to play slot CB, so IMO, he was drafted as a cornerback. Michael Robinson is a another example. He played QB and WR at Penn State but was drafted as a running back by the 49ers. If we look back do we say that we drafted a QB or running back? I think the answer is running back.

              9. As we seen Borland is not a starter, Hyde has lots of developing to do. Ward, yikes! Dontae Johnson could be promising but like I said, every year you need to draft for depth and impact players. In the last 2 years, they could have done both with all their picks but failed miserably in the 2012 draft, got cheap last year and now this year they have too many holes to fill which puts this staff with so much pressure. Not like they didn’t have any to begin with. Baalke is and will be the 49ers demise.

              10. Borland not a starter lol! Hyde has a lot of developing to do? You mean more touches. Ward had a couple bad games then played soild the rest of the way. Johnson played great when given the opportunity. Lynch is a stud! If you are seriously questioning this draft you won’t be happy with any draft class. Balke knocked it out of the park. Stop bringing up the 2012 draft. You can’t hit every draft. No one ever does.

              11. Yep, that’s right CK.

                And lets face it, with 5 draft picks that were shut down all of last year due to injury (Thomas, Acker, Reaser, Millard and Ramsey), the 49ers effectively already have 5 draft picks selected this year. Last year they drafted two years worth of players, while still getting 4 players in the first three rounds that could contribute in 2014, plus a 4th and 5th rounder that also contributed and showed promise last year. Great year to do it too, with an historically deep draft.

                The benefit of that is it now gives them more leeway to be aggressive in the draft this year, and focus on quality rather than quantity.

              12. Not to mention that next year they can likely expect a few pretty high comp picks due to FA departures this year, which also mitigates the need to be drafting for a lot of depth this year.

              13. It’s funny scooter, people forget or try to ignore what a quality GM balke is. It’s like some fans are still so disappointed with the front office over what happened with JH that they start to down play how well balke has done as the GM. You are absolutely correct by saying that the niners will have comp picks in 2016 due to the losses of Crabtree, iupati, culliver most likely. Then people complain about our cap room but fail to realize we will have over 30 mil next year.

              14. CK:

                Only 45 players are currently under contract in 2016. Aldon Smith is not shown on that list, but Ahmad Brooks is. Boldin’s cap hit at $2.1 million seems really low, but I guess it is what it is. Looks like the depth of CBs is thin. The current 2015 situation has 63 players under contract. It’s tough to tell what the real amount available for 2016 is, but it doesn’t seem like it will be daunting. Without doing a thorough analysis, I would guess that the 49ers getting younger is the reason why it appears that 2016 will have higher cap space than 2015.

              15. You’re right cubus, there will be some more players coming off contract in 2016, which the 49ers will either need to re-sign or replace.

                Some pretty important players too: Aldon Smith, Vernon Davis, Anquan Boldin, Justin Smith (if he doesn’t retire this year), Phil Dawson, Alex Boone, Ian Williams, Kendall Hunter.

                They’ll have the room to re-sign some of them or replace some others through FA, but it highlights the importance of drafting some quality players at positions such as WR, OLB, DL, etc., this year.

  13. Quick question. If all things are even, who would you sign? Gore, Peterson or Bush? And for how much? I’d like Peterson, bush then gore in that order.

      1. No way! Peterson would be out of our price range but he is clearly one. Draft another young back.

        1. When big niner said ‘if all things are even’, did he mean if they all cost the same?
          I mean, those are three VERY different RBs…not only style-wise, but value-wise.
          If we’re talking straight-up talent, of course I choose Peterson any day of the week and twice on Sunday.
          But we aren’t paying even AP AP-type money.
          I’d much rather pay Frank Gore Frank Gore-type money.
          $4 mil.

          1. Talk about friend prices!
            If AP would agree to play for us for $6 mil this year, I think Jed would even let him beat his kids on the 50 yard line at halftime.
            Too soon???

            1. If he wants to win a ring then maybe. Could you imagine how dynamic the offense could be or how much better kap would be out of play action? Even Hyde could learn a thing or two from him. I’d hate to be a defense playing them.

  14. Just read on CBS Sportsline the Lions released Reggie Bush (and the Pack cut A.J. Hawk). Bush could be attractive because he’s still got good speed. He’s had injury issues, but when healthy could help a number of teams.

    1. I remember wanting AJ Hawk in the draft. Solid LB better than wilhoite or Borland at this point IMO. Instead I believe we snatched up one Vernon Davis.

        1. Please tell me how Borland a guy who started what 5 games is better than a veteran who heals his job for years? If you remember Borland got burnt on TD’s and stomped over by Lynch. What part of his game do you see beyond backup?

      1. I remember being worried that a)The Packers might draft Davis and b) if they didn’t that we might draft Hawk. So to say the least I was pretty happy when the Packers took A.J.

  15. I’m hoping for Jay Ajayi. He has a great feel for which way a defender is leaning, then cuts the other way at exactly the right moment. Decisive. Powerful. Slashing style. One cut, then hits it (the opposite of Dixon).

    I think he’ll be gone by the 4th though. Since Baalke’s average draft spot has been the 3rd round, he’s taking Ajay in the 3rd.

      1. I like Parker at 15 and Akayi at at 46, but I don’t see it happening. As soon as I get a draft crush, he climbs the mock drafts.

        I liked White. Most had him mocked at 15. He ran the great 40. No way the 49ers get White.

        I liked Scherff. Some had him dropping to 15. He seems to be inching up the draft boards out of reach.

        I settled for DeVante Parker. Then watched more footage, read he was 6’3″ 209lbs and realized he’d be the perfect style match for new WR coach Adam Henry. Now he’s out of reach too.

        And forget trade ups. As long as any of the coveted receivers are on the board, trade up prices will be heavily inflated. And once they are off the board, expect Baalke to get low-ball offers to trade back.

        Pick 15 seems cursed. Maybe the 49ers can pay me to get draft crushes on players they don’t want, forcing White/Parker and the gang down to the 15 spot.

        1. If the Niners go WR-RB back-to-back in rounds 1&2 like they did in 2012, I’d take Abdullah over Ajayi.

        2. IMO White and Parker were already coveted by teams ahead of SF BEFORE the Combine. Then White runs the 4.35 and suddenly the talking heads are moving him ahead of Cooper. Classic ‘Show Room’ mentality.
          I think with Musgrave installing a WC approach and Carr as the QB that Cooper is a better fit for the RaiDuhs. He runs good routes and will fit the timing element of that offense. First Downs when they’re needed. Yeah, yeah, if Al were alive it would be White.

          1. Al Davis would prefer Cooper over White. Cooper is fast and he was the best offensive player in college football last year, like Tim Brown in ’87. If anything, Lane Kiffin held him back.

            1. Really? Al “Heyward-Bey” Davis?
              He had a Jones for speed that like most Jones seemed to cloud his judgement.

              1. A lot of things clouded his judgement toward the end, but speed is important and Cooper has it. Don’t forget that Davis traded into the top 5 for Tim Brown. Davis used to know what he was doing.

              2. You are I think completely correct about Cooper and we’re only guessing about what Al would do now, but he really liked to reach for that extra speed. He had a few talent biases that he wasn’t embarrassed about and he did really well getting talent for many years. His Marcus Allen pick was one of his better ones. In the early and mid years he remembered balance, as small, slow, can’t jump Fred Belitnikoff pairing with Cliff Branch, and excellent play by TEs during championship runs.
                Early success with his maverick approach lead him to some stubbornness later. He may not have more doggy picks than the Niners over the years, but his misses were sometimes spectacular too.

              3. I agree with all of that. Maybe 1987 Al would have drafted Cooper and 2007 Al would have drafted White.

          2. Brotha Tuna “…White and Parker were already coveted by teams ahead of SF BEFORE the Combine.”

            Agreed. Its very likely that many scouts had Parker and White rated above pick 15 well before me and the pundits with bad haircuts even knew their name.

            Much of what I wrote about 15 being cursed was meant to be funny, but I do believe in talent plateaus… some call “Value Groups.”

            The NFL has gone receiver crazy. Its going to be expensive for Baalke to trade up as long as White or Parker remain on the board, even if Baalke wants to select a non WR.

            I also suspect Baalke will get low-ball offer to trade back.

    1. I can’t believe I had to scroll through 80% of the posts to finally find someone who wants Ajayi. Forget change of pace backs, I want two do-it-all backs. Gore has at most one more year, and the niners need a stable of capable runners; Hunter can’t be relied upon given his injuries. Ajayi is big, fast enough to break runs, can catch and block. He or Abdullah would be awesome picks in round 2.

      If we’re not taking a back in Rd 2, I like the big FSU back Karlos Williams as a straight bruiser. David Johnson is tall/fast and may have the most physical talent other than Gurley. Malcolm Brown is surprising agile at his size.

  16. First need without question is WR, then a DE/DT, then a QB, then an OL or RB, then DB.
    If Baalke scores 3 players that are difference makers in the draft, I will be impressed.

    1. @Fan77…Only for optimism, I previously called for Baalke to score (4) difference-makers in the draft….it sort of depends on how well we do in FA first. ‘Haven’t seen any ‘hot’ WR’s in FA yet….?

  17. Pure coincidence. Deepest RB class in years. If first rd talent is available in 2nd, Baalke will grab him. Personally, I would love to see us trade up to early 2nd and grab gurley. Guy runs like lynch. Of course, not sure he gets past pats or Hawks.

      1. Lynch = shake my head
        The dude is amazing. Comparisons to other players are tricky, but I’ve come up with this: he blends elements of Earl Campbell with a bunch of Walter Payton. He’s almost as strong a tackle-breaker as Campbell was; not quite, but almost. He’s almost as quick, elusive and ‘smart’ a runner as Payton; lateral moves to set up advantage at contact; likes to deliver the blow, not absorb it; great vision to catch defenders over-running play, quickness and speed to threaten the edge and take it to the house; not quite as quick and fast as Sweetness, but almost. Good receiver, solid blocker.

        1. Interesting comparison, BT.

          When people talk about Lynch, people don’t mention how angry he runs. It’s one of his best attributes and it’s rare.

          1. Physical and elusive. Definitely a rare combination. Guys that are as strong as Lynch don’t have the type of shake and bake he has.

            Gurley is fast and strong but doesn’t have the lateral movement Lynch has.

            1. Yup. When Lynch was coming out college he compared himself to LaDainian Tomlinson, which is a good comparison except Lynch runs angrier than LT.

        2. Great description. Only thing I will add is what they reported on I believe during the Super Bowl, he keeps his legs spread so far apart that it makes it harder to tackle him. Couple that with the traits mentioned above, he may be the best running we’ve seen in years.

  18. The night Aaron Hernandez whacked that dude, his bar tab was $243 and he left a $30 tip. Not even near 15% (about 12%). CHEAP bastard!!…..He had recently signed a new $40 million contract……What a scumbag!… (I highly doubt he received poor service).

  19. I don’t see us drafting a CB in the top rounds…or signing a top CB FA

    with Tramaine Brock, Jimmie Ward, Dontae Johnson, Kenneth Acker and Keith Reaser ……I think we are set

    maybe cox returns…..

    1. I hope Jimmie Ward improves….He looked a little lost at times to me last year. He doesn’t find ball and get turned around soon enough YET.

      1. He’s a FA. Last year was a one year deal and I wouldn’t be surprised if he returns under the same circumstance.

    1. If Chicago doesn’t grab him I think he could be there.We could indeed see a big guy and it would disappoint many but Shelton would be hard to pass on. RB in 2nd is possible-does Gurley fall ,Duke Johnson,Tevin Coleman maybe?

      1. Everybody wants a WR, but it doesn’t look like we can snag one of the top 3. Shelton is a monster and preferable to Armstead but this is the first mock I’ve seen recently that he falls to us. I’m fine with a big guy, but one of the top 3 WRs would be awesome. Realistically We probably get one of the second tier receivers in the 2nd or 3rd.

    2. The 49ers are really good at developing quality defensive linemen in-house without spending high draft picks or big free agency bucks.

      This core competency allows Baalke to spend draft and cap capital on other positions.

      There are interior defensive linemen that I’d be perfectly pleased if the 49ers do draft at 15. But should they save the high draft pick if they can develop someone in-house that was a 5th-7th rounder or free agent who is 90% as good?

      Though it wasn’t a need, I was really hoping the 49ers would trade up for Aaron Donald last year. If I think a guy will be great, get him.

      1. Brodie the team has done a good job developing bu D linemen in FA and later RD’s but the true quality guys have primarily been high RD picks.
        Glen Dorsey RD1
        Justin Smith RD1
        R. McDonald RD3
        A. Smith RD1

  20. I’m wrestling right now with the news that AP and the NFLPA won their court case against the NFL for its suspension terms. The Union’s advocacy of their member against the League is understandable, but are they taking up sides with rouge behavior at the expense of a sense of decency? In their zeal to confront the Evil League are they siding with bad guys? What about all the Union members who are good citizens? What about the players who don’t use PEDs or recreational drugs or drive drunk or assault women and children? Shouldn’t they be advocated for by holding the membership to standards of conduct? Some HOF guys said they were angry with Rice and Peterson for staining the reputations of all NFL guys past, present and future.
    Shouldn’t the NFLPA intercede on behalf of its membership for treatments and guidance for guys like Josh Gordon or Aldon or Adrian? Are they endorsing bad behavior with their silence and blind advocacy?

    1. Where is The Press on this? Reams and reams are written dissecting the minutiae around hirings and firings and play-calling, but nobody stops to question the Union? The League is responsible for the off-field behavior of Union members, but the Union gets a pass from the media? Curious.

      1. It’s not a defense of the crime it’s a defense of the CBA. Whatever the union thinks about the nature of Peterson’s crime is irrelevant The NFLPA cannot allow the league to change the rules at will and punish players retroactively. The union must protect all players and can’t have an unfavorable precedent set here.

        1. Also BT, while I completely agree, there must be many Hall of Famers from the past who committed crimes similar to Peterson and Rice, who never got caught. As we go forward the past is revealed to have been a much more brutal time than anyone realised. on the field and off.

        2. What many people fail to put into perspective is the whole social media aspect of this. 20-30 years ago guys could whatever they wanted and very little information got out. Now things are being reported either while it’s happening or immediately after. Everyone is a news reporter. Right place, right time, all you need is a cell phone camera. I do not think guys today are doing anything worse than what was going on years ago, the difference is we know almost everything.

    2. None of this is football related, but please indulge me for a brief reply…
      Sounds like the same dilemma that workers find themselves in in workplaces all around the country.
      I’m emphatically pro-union–always was–and I’m still a member of one.
      But I have some real nerds working under me that cry to union on a regular basis when they are clearly in the wrong.
      It can be extremely frustrating…especially when you do have other workers who, as you say, are good citizens, whom you fully support, and who do good work and follow the rules.
      For example, I have this one lady that works under me and she’s been a troublemaker and a sick leave abuser for years–I’ve suspended her numerous times for inappropriate behavior.
      Her union rep once asked me why I always disciplined this particular employee and not my other employees and that I didn’t treat her fairly.
      To me, that type of thinking is an insult to all of the other employees that don’t do the same wrong stuff that she does.
      Should all employees get nailed because of the actions of a few nerds???
      Sorry, I’ll stop.
      Thanks for that post, Tuna.

      1. KR – I know we are way off topic but I certainly agree with your comments. Unions should sell themselves as a group that provides an experienced, competent work force. I think that still holds for some,at least, trade unions. And you would think they’d want to police their own to maintain their reputation as such. Instead, I’m afraid their only concern is keeping a dues paying member and therefore defend every worker equally. Don’t know if you work for a gov’t agency but from what I’ve heard those are the worst. I had a pal that was a nurse and when he tried to hold a malingerer accountable they drove him out of his job.

        1. Thanks for the comments John.
          I could go on and on for hours on this topic but that would be better suited for another forum.

      2. Kauai,

        As much as I dislike unions, the woman’s union rep is correct. the same rules should apply to everyone. HOWEVER how those rules are structured should be reflected in the expectations on various employees.

        So for whatever infractions a person commits, other criminal and no tolerance policies, there should be a progressive system of penalties in place.

        So for an employee that comes in late the first time…maybe a warning. The 2nd or third time a penalty. A fifth time? Suspended? Fired? whatever you think the policy should be. So a problematic employee is subjected to the same set of rules that someone with an equivalent work track record but not the same set of rules as a first time offender.

        The other structure difference would be a different set of rules for shift leaders, supervisors, managers, executives etc… (this is often necessary because Managers are usually on salary vs. workers on an hourly wage).

        The key to any of this is documentation, documentation, documentation. Most companies have employee handbooks, documents and agreements that must be signed to acknowledge that they understand the rules. Then all worker infraction of rules should be documented to be presented for review at an employee’s performance review, promotion, punishment or termination.

        1. They actually have a bargaining agreement that is quite clear with respect to behavior and attendance.
          Obviously, all employees must treated equally, and here, they are.
          In the case I mentioned above, the union rep was questioning why this particular woman was the only employee consistantly getting reprimanded–as if that was true, it isn’t–which insinuates that her cooworkers are just as bad as she is but don’t get reprimanded.
          Her cooworkers are no where near as bad as she is and never were which makes the comparison rediculous and in my opinion, insulting to those cooworkers who try hard to be good employees.
          My response to the union rep was basically that her cooworkers didn’t get into trouble as much as her because they aren’t as bad as she is, period.
          I guess that original point was that unions can good and bad depending on the circumstances…

  21. So I was reviewing some of the WRsin this draft again last night, now knowing what we know from the combine. I was particularly keen to see Jaelen Strong again, and was really hoping to be impressed with him now knowing he actually has pretty good athletic talent.

    I came away with a realisation. I have talked up Agholor and previously I had said I didn’t understand how he is considered a 2nd round pick when guys like Strong, Funchess and Coates are considered first rounders. What I realised is I still think that statement is true, but I had I was mistaken about what I meant. Agholor is a good prospect, but to be fair he probably should be a second rounder. Its just that Strong, Funchess and Coates really aren’t first round prospects.

    Funchess and Coates are pretty obvious as to why (one is very slow, the other can’t catch a cold). But Strong was the real surprise for me, on watching him again. He really lacks any suddenness in his breaks, and he completely tips off to the DB where he is going in his “cuts” (I have those in quotation marks because they are so rounded they aren’t really cuts so much as a slow turn). This is why despite his tested athleticism he rarely creates much of any separation, and DBs almost always seem to be all over him.

    His two best games were against USC and UCLA, and quite frankly aside from a couple of plays he was pretty unimpressive. UCLA put a SS on him for much of the day (a guy that ran a 4.72 at the combine) and he generally covered him pretty easily. Against Oregon State, Steven Nelson was all over him all day. And for a guy known for his strong hands, he sure did drop a lot of balls.

    Right now I see the WRs ranked as such:

    Tier 1: Cooper, Parker, White, DGB
    Tier 2: Perriman, Greene, Agholor, Lockett, McBride, Smith
    Tier 3: Dorsett, Hardy, Strong, Montgomery, Coates, Funchess, Lippett, Davis

    1. Scooter who do you think we will take in the first and second rd. I feel like a WR is needed in round one, but the kid in just wants the new toy. The more I think about the possibility of Justin Smith leaving it makes me think DL.

      1. I just don’t like our chances of getting one of Cooper, Parker or White, and I doubt Baalke will touch DGB. And I don’t think any of the tier 2 WRs are worth pick #15.

        I think the most likely scenario, assuming we stay at #15, is an OLB or DL, unless somehow Waynes is still available at #15.

        The second round is where I think we’ll get our WR.

      1. DGB is kinda in his own category as well isn’t he? Albeit in a different way. Kind of a wildcard.

          1. I love Cooper but the combine hype has Kevin White above him in all the mocks. Think that will change as we get closer to draft time?

      2. I agree 100%.
        Over 100 Rec, over 1700 yds & 16 TDs?!
        Holy crap!!!
        Cooper does it all.
        Look for this kid to keep lighting it up in the pros.
        P.S. Let’s not forget that those stats are for a 14 game season.

        1. Ha!
          Reminds me of Lloyd Christmas.
          Lloyd: ‘What are my chances?’
          Mary: ‘Not good.’
          Lloyd: ‘You mean, not good like one out of a hundred?’
          Mary: ‘I’d say more like one out of a million.’
          Lloyd: ‘So you’re telling me there’s a chance…yeah!’

        1. Now that the combine is over, it seems that revised mock drafts are putting White ahead of Cooper (McShay, Charles Davis, Daniel Jeremiah) . Could just be a combine “hangover”, which may settle down after a few weeks.

          1. I think come draft day there will be some teams that rank White #1, but most will settle on Cooper as #1. Depends on what the personnel people like in WR prospects. In my opinion Cooper is the better prospect.

    2. Scooter, I always appreciate your comments. Permit me to ask: Where would you put Patton and Ellington in those tiers of yours? That’s what Baalke has to ask himself, no?

      1. If Patton was in this draft, I’d have him around the bottom of tier 2. But then I really liked him in the 2013 draft and thought he should have been a mid second/ early third round pick. Not sure why he hasn’t come on, maybe coaching, maybe just a lack of opportunity, or maybe he just never really was that good a prospect, but I’m really hopeful he makes some noise this year.

        If Ellington was in this draft I’d have around the top of tier 3 with Dorsett.

        1. Not being able to see practices makes these questions tough. There are a lot of young guys on the roster I’d like to see get more opportunities.

          1. Sure does. I think there may be a few guys on the roster that just need an opportunity, including Patton and Ellington.

    3. Scooter,
      White, Cooper, and Parker are sure fire 1st rd picks and yes, they are first tier WR’s.

      Your 2nd and 3rd tier look alright, but I would add Dorsett on the 2nd tier.
      I like the other 2nd tier players you have and wouldn’t remove any of them.

      1. Devin Smith and Phillip Dorsett are borderline tier 2/ tier 3 for me, which is why I had them at the bottom of tier 2 (Smith) and top of tier 3 (Dorsett). I went with Smith in tier 2 as I think his size makes him a more attractive prospect, but both guys are legitimate deep threats from day 1 that could end up being a lot more.

  22. Ricky Jean’s a Redskin.
    Redskins signed DE Ricky Jean-Francois to a three-year, $9 million deal.
    The deal includes $4 million guaranteed, and could be worth as much as $11.25 million if Jean-Francois reaches certain incentives. It’s a nice chunk of change for a player who got released by the Colts just three days ago. He should slide in as free agent LE Jarvis Jenkins’ replacement in Washington. Jean-Francois had a negative Pro Football Focus rating in both his years with the Colts, and generated only 5.5 sacks in 26 games.

    1. I can’t wait to hear some of the fans saying that balke is an idiot for not paying 3 mil a year for a back up DT/DE in Jean francois.. An average player that Scotty MC just paid for.

      1. “Jean-Francois had a negative Pro Football Focus rating in both his years with the Colts, and generated only 5.5 sacks in 26 games.”

    2. Interior defensive players that do just OK seem do better when they come to the 49ers. Dorsey is an example. It could be the 49ers shade the NT in an “under” front, or Tomsula working his magic, or both.

      RJF was a nice swing fill in for McDonald or the NT. He wasn’t so good filling in for Justin Smith. He had a hard time disengaging from blocks (and blatant Seattle holds).

      Maybe Scot McCloughan has a role in mind for RJF similar to what Fangio had. He might even have his eye on Brooks.

      1. the NT doesn’t always (or even often) shade to an Under front. It’s going to be based on the match up. I suspect the Under front was more often used against zone blocking opponents.

        the Niners have played the Nose Tackle position different than many other schemes. They didn’t necessarily two gap (control their blocker, shed and create a pile up on the line of scrimmage). And they didn’t do the Jimmy Johnson no read gap penetrating scheme either. They employed an old school 1 gap read and react scheme which required the defensive lineman to engage their blocker (stack), read the play, pick a gap, shed their blocker and then fire into the gap.
        as for RJF and the other Niner’s nose tackles.

        I think they are well coached in the use of leverage and reads which allows them to have to rely less on brute strength and size than other Nose Tackles.

  23. I have a question about the center’s responsibilities for calling the protection scheme. The center is down in his stance. Just before the play starts he’s supposed to look up and decide how the offensive linemen will protect the quarterback. From that position, it would seem to me to be difficult to see the linebackers/defensive backs and if they are planning to blitz or not. He might have a big 0 tech nose tackle across from him. Further, it seems to me to be difficult to look up from that position even without a 300 lb guy across from you, although I think the centers will sometimes drop their buts into more of a squatting position so that they can look up; then they get in the final stance and the ball is snapped on the count. With the big behemoths on the offensive line it might be difficult to see side to side as well.

    I often see QBs, especially Manning, pointing out defensive players. Now that I think about it, it seems like it’s usually LBs or DBs that he is pointing to. So is the center not usually responsible for calling protections on potentially blitzing linebackers/defensive backs. If not, then couldn’t this cause some issues with getting the protection right, because the center is making the call for the lineman and the QB for the linebackers/defensive backs. I don’t know, I’m just wondering if I understand this correctly and if what I’ve written is correct, how is this potential conflict handled.

    1. that’s an interesting question.

      Usually the Center is in charge of calling the line protections. they look at the defense and line everyone up (the defensive look/alignment usually effects who blocks whom). when they’re down they relay the info to the Guard who relays it to the Tackle.

      I think the protection adjustments the QB makes are usually going to be route adjustments and maybe adjustments to the running back’s responsibilities route/blocking. Also a good QB should be able to ID potential pressure from either a blitz or a mismatch and expect to step up in the pocket or side step one way or the other to avoid the pressure so he can reset his feet in the pocket.

      1. Thanks for the response.

        On a bronco forum, someone asked the following question.

        “In the Broncos one-back shotgun, the running back will switch just a few steps from Peyton’s left to his right (or vice versa.) On NFL Turning Point they actually had Peyton miked and you could hear him directing Moreno to the other side just before the snap. What’s the purpose of shifting late like this?

        Also, why is it necessary for Manning to point out the “Mike” linebacker before every play?

        A senior member in that forum responded as follows:

        “It’s all blocking related. With switching Moreno it’s about which side he thinks the blitz is coming. Identifying the mike linebacker “sets” the protection because the linemen then assign themselves their blocks from the center going outward.”

    1. That’s the way I see it. With just about every team needing a CB I don’t think he is going to make it to us.

    2. Scooter:

      As you pointed out in an earlier exchange, Vernon is a free agent next year. The draftees at TE don’t look that good this year and the quotes in your link weren’t positive about Maxx Williams. But Baalke has stated that he likes to draft for the future. So do you think we’ll get a TE this year?

      1. Certainly a possibility, cubus, but I kind of hope they don’t. I really don’t like the TE prospects this year, at least not as future #1 TEs. Williams is really the only one I think is an impact player from the TE spot, but he’s not a special athlete. More of a reliable pass catching TE in the mold of Jason Witten or Heath Miller.

        One thing to keep in mind is they did draft Trey Millard last year, who is a natural H-Back with the versatility to also line up as an in-line TE, FB or RB. I think he is a better prospect than most of the TEs this year. Although I do think he is best suited as the #2 TE/ H-Back like what Delanie Walker used to provide.

      2. If they do draft a TE, I hope they take AJ Derby. He’s only got one year of experience as a TE (he’s a former QB), but in his one year he showed some real promise. Might take a little bit of time to develop, but in terms of hidden gems, he may be one of the best at the TE spot in this draft.

        1. Scooter the guy has 22 receptions. You’re telling me that from 22 receptions you’ve deemed him as one of the best TE’s in the draft? I know it’s not a great TE class but c’mon man. He’s UFA material at best. Maybe he develops over time but if a team spends a draft pick on him shame on them.

            1. Scooter clearly I struck a cord with my “lets the scouts do the scouting comment’ but that’s no reason to become a defensive jerk about everything I say now.

              If you weren’t reading my comments with venom on the mind you would have seen that my comment was about the kids draft value and not his actual ability to develop into an NFL TE. You said you hoped the 49ers picked him and I simply commented that from my perspective it’s highly unlikely that he’s going to be drafed at all in is far more likely a candidate to be an UFA.

              If you’re going to feel compelled to retort with an attitude then feel free to ignore my comments in the future like plenty others around here do.

              1. There were most certainly other ways to phrase your comment if you didn’t mean it to belittle my opinion, CfC.

                If you re-read my initial comment, you’ll see I said he could be one of the best hidden gem TEs available. A potential late round guy that out plays his draft position, as he has upside and is still learning the position.

                I’d have no qualms investing a 7th rounder in him and seeing what they can make of him.

              2. Thought the Aussies had thicker skin then that, didn’t realize that pointing out the fact that your best hidden gem prospect has all of 22 receptions to his college resume was belittling. Sounds to me like a basic fact that would count when considering him.

              3. Like I said CfC, you could have made that point in any number of ways that weren’t condescending or belittling. Given your previous comments about me having an opinion on draft eligible players it seemed pretty obvious where you intended that comment to land.

                The fact you continue to insult me is quite baffling, and shows who here has the thin skin.

              4. Scooter is one of our finest scouts in here. No need to attack him because you’re not getting the respect you believe your comments deserve CFC….

              5. The only thing baffling Scooter is that you’ve think I’ve insulted you. Razor go eat a big bowl of STFU.

              6. “Given your previous comments about me having an opinion on draft eligible players it seemed pretty obvious where you intended that comment to land.”
                You took those comments I made way to much to heart at the time Scooter. Maybe the timing of them insinuated as much but they were never directed at you. Even still I never intimated that having an opinion on players was my gripe, it’s the people that act and speak as if their opinion is how it’s going to be or try and tell you that you’re wrong for having a different one then them.

                This whole argument came about not because I have a different opinion on the player but because you took what I said the wrong way. I never said the player wont be any good I simply said that someone with that level of experience at their position is hardly likely to be drafted at all.

                If you really want to continue to be annoyed by something you took the wrong way then by all means go for it but that’s on you.

              7. Nope, I just came back to the computer to apologize myself. Rather then call you out for not getting my point I should have recognized that I had offended and offered an apology then.

                My scouting point truly wasn’t pointed at you specifically and my comment about the TE prospect was meant to be a prod but if my tone went too far then again I do apologize.

              8. Cheers mate.

                I agree his lack of experience is a major red flag. I also think given his lack of experience that to step in as a starting TE for the team all year shows there is a bit of promise there, and from what I have read he appears to be a pretty good athlete for the position. Could be worth a late round flyer.

              9. I tend to be hesitant on players that switch positions late in their amateur career to begin with. Maybe there’s a good story on why he was a QB for 3 years and then moved to TE and why they never figured that TE was his more natural position earlier. Maybe there isn’t. If it was mentioned in one of those links you posted then my bad. It’s really hard for me to imagine that there can be enough seen from him in his limited action to truly be able to comment on his merit as an NFL prospect at his position. It’s about as random of a pick as you can make from my view. 7th round picks are about as valueless as they can be but even still I’d like to spend one on someone that has at least something more tangible to point to, IF I think there is a good chance that the player can be had in the UFA market and in his case I think he can be.

                What a great story if he indeed turns into a legitimate NFL TE.

        2. I agree on Derby. He’s very raw, but he has a skill set that you can’t teach. A diamond in the rough that I hope Baalke takes a chance on.

          1. I’d roll with Derby, but not sure you’d have to use a draft pick on him. Probably could get him as a UFA….

              1. I’d say one big difference is mentality. Millard has the more physical, throwback fullback mentality whereas Derby is more cerebral with an understanding of how to run routes having played quarterback most of his career….

              2. I’ll take your word for it. Yesterday was the first time I’d heard his name, and from the one game that I could find it seemed like they had him doing the same type of stuff as Millard did at OU.

                In that Auburn game, Derby didn’t seem to be able to get any type of push when run blocking.

              3. Is him doing much the same stuff as Millard such a bad thing, Jack? I’m looking forward to seeing Millard play, but he’s still very much an unknown quality in the NFL.

                I don’t really see much in this draft to get me excited about as future #1 TE prospects. Williams and maybe Walford, potentially Kroft.

                A #2 TE that is versatile like Walker was would be a nice addition to the team in my opinion. Hopefully that guy is Millard, but I think rolling the dice on a late round TE that is very much still learning the position but brings a QBs understanding to offense wouldn’t be a bad thing.

              4. @Scooter-worked out for the Patriots. They’ve already converted a DE into a Fullback, what’s one more?

              5. That’s true razor, I’d actually forgotten they’ve already successfully converted Miller to FB. Derby is actually already further along than Miller was!

              6. Speaking of which, one guy that has been mentioned as a potential DE to TE convert this year is Lyndon Trail. He’s got good size for the position and apparently he did pretty well in red zone drills as a TE at the Senior Bowl.

                49ers spoke to him at the Senior Bowl too.

  24. In a year when the new field looked terrible, the traffic was horrific and the off-field politics were an embarrassment, I would think 49ers front office types would avoid raising “Division winner” banners like Parag Marathe’s award for being 40 under 40. Is the “under forty” some kind of a football IQ analytic?

  25. Players and low level coaches are turning down the opportunity to come to the niners. Gosh I hate rejection. I hope “BARK” feels that way.

  26. In listening to the “Insiders” on ESPN (No, not us ‘insiders’ on here. Gawd, no!), meaning the ex-execs and personnel types, I’m hearing a drumbeat about not wanting to guess wrong on players’ character issues. As in its now more important than ever with the teams in light of Rice/Peterson/McDonald fiascos. The TV people are whining at the NFL. The league is embarrassed, some owners have been embarrassed and others don’t want to be. A lot of noise and flapping lips; we’ll see what the teams’ actual resolve is, and DGB is the poster boy for that. The second weed arrest gives one pause, although weed isn’t all that big a deal to me. Ah, but the DV incident, even though not prosecuted will be a red flag for some teams. Ravens-yup. 49ers? Probably. All 32 teams? Seems unlikely. If he slips to the 2nd Round, is that sufficient cover for teams? Probably is for some teams. Tbd

    1. what is the “DV incident”?

      and isn’t Jamis Winston another character concern test case? Yet it seems like he may go #1 or top 5 (if Marriota goes first, someone is going to trade up for Winston). Any changes to the core attitude and beliefs by the NFL..I’ll have to believe it when I see it. Until then it’s about money and winning. So if the talent outweighs the character risks, you’ll see teams go for it. I think the draft day falls of Dan Marino, Warren Sapp and Randy Moss are still on the minds of NFL GMs; all hall of fame players who’s draft stock fell due to predraft character concerns.

      1. affp
        My written source being Wikipedia fwiw, DGB was accused of pushing an 18 year old woman down some stairs. She chose not to file charges, but there doesn’t seem to be much dispute about what happened (according to some hearsay I got from a usually reliable source with a network sports connection). I find that troubling; raises questions in my mind about him.
        “…believe it when I see it.” Yes, that was my point about resolve. Some comparisons to Randy Moss’ draft day are already out there. Nobody wants to be the guy who passed on Moss, hahaha!

    2. BT:

      AFFP seems to have a good point. Did ESPN Insiders mention Winston at all? After all he has had allegations of sexual assault of which he was cleared, a gun complaint, shoplifting incidents and a half-game suspension for shouting vulgar comments while standing on a table at a pep rally.

      One difference might be that Winston was cleared in the sexual assault allegation whereas DGB was not charged in the incident where he allegedly pushed a young woman down several stairs. Apparently the alleged victim refused to cooperate.

      1. Winston was cleared on the rape allegations, so that won’t be held against him. The teams have cover on that issue. There will be a civil case still to play out, but I’m not making any assumptions on that. The shoplifting was stupid and immature. I’m suspicious of Winston too; his risk of f.u. might be higher than DGB’s.
        Johnny Beiber was charmingly saying all the right things at this time last year.

    3. BT,

      All about the money. These billionaires do not care what peons are complaining about. It is just something for them to talk about. If this kid can bring in more money than I can pay him, it’s worth. If anyone thinks any other way, they are naive.

      A coworker of mine, has a brother that’s an assistant at a college. He says college coaches say all the time, “Good kids will get you fired.” There’s a lot of truth in that.

      1. It looks like an epic battle of NFL Money vs Team Money.

        NFL Money – The NFL’s expanding the fan base to include more women for the sole purpose of making more money. Women that are great football fans, who bought jerseys, paying close attention to Super Bowl ads. This adds up to big money. Domestic violence threatens this lucrative new fan base.

        Team Money – Teams are under tremendous pressure to win. Winning (usually) equals more revenue. Winning can even get a team a shiny new stadium. Skipping over talented players with past off the field issues might take wins off the record, and reduce ticket sales.

        Who will win the money battle?

        1. Brodie I believe that teams will lose more fans [money] by losing than by winning with bad character players. There will always be more teams out there willing to take a chance on players with character issues than not. Be it drugs, general criminal activity, sexual assualts or domestic violence.

    1. The fact that he is gone just seems illogical. Thanks for all of the memories of Mr. Spock Leonard Nimoy. \\ _ //

  27. MWN, I don’t think Baalke needs one re CB and TE. It’s funny that when draft season comes around, fans forget the talent you already have.

    CB: Brock and Culliver/D. Johnson start on the outside, Ward at the nickel. MM thinks we’ll sign either Culliver or Cox. Whether or not that’s true, I think Baalke will re-sign Cook and maybe another FA. Remember that he drafted two other CBs last year, one of whom, Acker, played in pre-season and looked promising.

    TE: We still have Vernon, Vance, and Carrier. Millard, drafted last year but who did not play, is also on the roster.

    IMO the challenge is QB and safety. We also need help at DL, OL, RB, and WR, but the draft should help there. Also, lots of free agents at RB.

    1. Agreed .. but..

      in the early rounds .. I’d focus mostly on OL
      and WR … after all .. we did see Kap set
      another NFL record .. but this is one that
      absolutely no one in his right mind would want to break ..

      (Ya kno .. the record for most sacks) …

Comments are closed.