Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford
The 49ers find themselves entering the new league year with a new coach, and arguably another year 1 of a rebuild, for the third straight season. The last offseason the 49ers had a coach returning from the previous season, they were coming off their 3rd NFC Championship Game appearance in as many years.
I'm sure you all know about the many reasons the 49ers have gone from perennial powerhouse to a bottom dweller: Jim Harbaugh leaving for Michigan, Trent Baalke's "success" with the draft, players retiring (some eventually coming back the following year), Greg Roman, Aldon Smith's troubles, Chip Kelly, etc. Therefore, I won't go into any more detail. Their depth chart is not very impressive to begin with, but does have a few key roles filled. However, the defense will be making the switch to a 4-3, similar to what their DC, Robert Saleh, ran with Gus Bradley in Jacksonville, so this opens up a few spots, as well.
Needs: CB, Edge Rusher, ILB, WR, QB
With any team in rebuilding mode, it's not a bad idea to move pack and pick up more draft picks (if you can) unless you are sold on someone, or have them highly valued vs the rest of the available players. Although, the 49ers have 10 draft picks already in the 2017 draft, they need young talent and to improve the team's depth, so they should be free to make moves all over the draft board, and possibly stock up on future picks, as well. With the #2 pick, there's a good chance someone would want to move up to grab a player they like that fits their system, and allow the 49ers to move back a few spots and still get one of their top ranked players. Looking at the draft board any of the top 20+ ranked prospects would help the 49ers out at a position of need. However, there are no trades in this mock draft, and they might not be able to find someone who can or would be willing to meet what they would want to move back.
Looking back at the 49ers top needs, 2017 does not have any standout QBs and it is really shallow for ILBs, but it's a deep draft for CBs, WRs, and Edge Rushers.
DE Solomon Thomas, Stanford
Yes, I know the 49ers have drafted DeForest Buckner and Arik Armstead with their last two first round picks, but they finished 24th in the league last year in pass rush and are making the switch to a 4-3. Solomon Thomas, although a bit undersized, is one of most versatile players in the draft. With the 49ers witching to the 4-3, he could find himself lined up as the 3-tech, the 5-tech, and even the Leo position. In 27 games with Stanford, Thomas had 102 tackles, 25.5 tackles for a loss, and 11.5 sacks, while lined up in many different positions.
Other potential options for the 49ers at Pick #2:
- DE Myles Garrett, Texas A&M (if for some reason he's not selected first overall),
- SS Jamal Adams, LSU (Would you really be surprised if Lynch took the best safety in the draft at #2?)
- ILB Reuben Foster, Alabama (ILB is a need and there's not too much talent at the position in this draft)
Though, like I said previously, any of the top 20+ ranked prospects would help the 49ers out at a position of need.
2017 BGN Mock Draft Order
1) Browns (JALupowitz): Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
2) 49ers (sports00fan00): Solomon Thomas, DE, Stanford
3) Bears (gubby):
4) Jaguars (TheWhalwing):
5) Titans (drc242):
6) Jets (boomorbust):
7) Chargers (NowWhat?):
8) Panthers (B-Potts):
9) Bengals (Kiko’s Delivery Service):
10) Bills (jimmyrustler):
11) Saints (NotSoSlick):
12) Browns (Straight Edge Sid):
13) Cardinals (Paulie97):
14) Eagles (ablesser88):
15) Colts (mconner96):
16) Ravens (The Man, The Myth, the Matthews!):
17) Washington (kbruneault):
18) Titans (mchiodo):
19) Buccaneers (ei78):
20) Broncos (NVEaglesShark):
21) Lions (Shark Fighter):
22) Dolphins (J. Wil):
23) Giants (BigWardy59):
24) Raiders (big DUB):
25) Texans (GotFunds):
26) Seahawks (Rogmcc23):
27) Chiefs (B1G Cat):
28) Cowboys (RegalEagle):
29) Packers (Wutang_):
30) Steelers (General_Lee12):
31) Falcons (SirJon):
32) Saints (Huffs_cellmate):