49ers 2018 Mock Draft

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49ers' General Manager John Lynch and Head Coach Kyle Shanahan are ready to take the team to the next stage with their second draft class.

As promised, here is my 49ers’ only mock draft as a follow up to my other mock draft (here). I’ll be addressing the 49ers through each round, including the picks acquired in the mock trade with Miami. With Roquan Smith and Quenton Nelson off the board, the 49ers traded down with the Miami Dolphins for the 11th, 73rd, and 209th picks.

11. San Francisco 49ers (via MIA) – LB Tremaine Edmunds, Virginia Tech

Nov 24, 2017; Charlottesville, VA, USA; Virginia Tech Hokies linebacker Tremaine Edmunds (49) tackles Virginia Cavaliers running back Olamide Zaccheaus (4) in the first quarter at Scott Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

This pick seems like a no brainer with Roquan Smith and Quenton Nelson off the board, and the Dolphins made a good offer to move up two spots.

Per Tony Pauline of Draft Analyst: “In that recent mock, I have the San Francisco 49ers trading down with the Buffalo Bills and selecting Leighton Vander Esch. This won’t be the case if Tremaine Edmunds is available when the Niners are called to the clock, as he is the player the team covets.”

Here, I have the 49ers trading down anyway because I wouldn’t be afraid of the Raiders taking Edmunds, but the 49ers could just pick him at 9 if they are.

Edmunds is a physical freak at 6’5”, 253 and can play a multitude of positions for the 49ers. He can play the MIKE or the SAM linebacker in Robert Saleh’s system, and can even rush the passer with his hand in the dirt. Edmunds is a rare defensive chess piece because of his size, athleticism, and age. He’s only 19!

The drawbacks to Edmunds’ game is that he is a little slow when processing and diagnosing plays, but that will come with more experience and playing time.

The 49ers also hosted him for an official visit.

59. San Francisco 49ers (via NO) – CB Quenton Meeks, Stanford

Jan 1, 2016; Pasadena, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal cornerback Quenton Meeks (24) returns an interception for a touchdown against the Iowa Hawkeyes during the first quarter in the 2016 Rose Bowl at Rose Bowl. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Taking the local player the 49ers have been linked to throughout the draft process, Quenton Meeks provides excellent value at 59. A perfect fit for the Seattle-style Cover 3 defense the 49ers run and has the size that the team desires for its cornerbacks (6’1”, 209).

It might be overkill to take Meeks this early after signing Richard Sherman this offseason, and having a high draft pick invested in Ahkello Witherspoon, but Sherman is still 30 and coming off an Achilles injury with easy outs in his contract.

Meeks would be perfect for Sherman to guide (something Meeks has openly gushed over) and eventually take over his spot on the outside opposite Witherspoon.

You can never have too many cornerbacks in today’s NFL, especially ones with talent like Meeks.

70. San Francisco 49ers (via Chi) – EDGE Kemoko Turay, Rutgers

Oct 17, 2015; Bloomington, IN, USA; Indiana Hoosiers quarterback Nate Sudfeld (7) runs away from Rutgers Scarlet Knights defensive end Kemoko Turay (58) in the first half of their game at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kryger-USA TODAY Sports

Kemoko Turay has had quite the journey while at Rutgers. I thought he had the potential to be a first round pick in the 2016 draft, but shoulder injuries and some time in the doghouse caused him to fall off many people’s radars.

However, Turay stormed back into the spotlight with a good senior year and had a great performance at the Senior Bowl. He showed the same potential I fell in love with after his redshirt freshman season. A long-limbed, extremely explosive, high-energy EDGE rusher with all the potential in the world.

He moves incredibly well in space and is fluid and explosive as hell. He gets off the snap quickly and has great closing speed. He also has a toolbox of pass rush moves that allow him be a monster on the edge. However, he was a poor run defender, consistently out of position or being moved off the line too easily.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Turay gets picked by the 49ers at 59, or by someone else even higher, because he is a stud pass rusher and the sky’s the limit for him, despite his obvious limitations against the run.

The 49ers also hosted him for an official visit.

73. San Francisco 49ers (via MIA) – LB Jerome Baker, Ohio State

Oct 28, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Jerome Baker (17) reacts against the Penn State Nittany Lions in the second half at Ohio Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Linebacker overkill? Not at all.

With Tremaine Edmunds selected in the first round, the 49ers should still look to add quality linebackers in the draft because I don’t believe Reuben Foster will be with the team much longer, and it is a need anyway.

Ohio State’s Jerome Baker is a WILL linebacker in Saleh’s system and has great speed and size. His athleticism pops off the tape as he can chase sideline to sideline and cover TEs and RBs. He also attacks gaps well as a blitzer.

Much like Edmunds, Baker can be a little slow to react at times, but I feel that was more because of the injuries that bogged him down. However, Baker is too laid back in pass coverage and lacks the ability to play the ball in the air. And according to Lance Zierlein of NFL.com, an AFC defensive coach questioned his toughness, saying he “has no dog in him.”

The 49ers also hosted him for an official visit.

74. San Francisco 49ers – WR Equanimeous St. Brown, Notre Dame

Oct 1, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish wide receiver Equanimeous St. Brown (6) breaks free of the tackle attempt by Syracuse Orange cornerback Corey Winfield (11) and runs for a touchdown in the first quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports

The 49ers finally get the tall receiver the offense lacked all of the 2017-2018 season.

St. Brown has a massive 6’5”, 214 pound frame to go with long arms, and he has speed to burn. Posting a 4.48 40-yard dash at the combine, St. Brown proved he has the deep speed he showed on film, consistently getting behind defenders. And he’s not just a burner, St. Brown is fearless when going over the middle of the field and rarely drops passes.

Another big plus for St. Brown is that he has experience from both the slot and on the outside, showing the versatility that Shanahan loves from his wide receivers.

St. Brown does struggle against physical defensive backs, but he’s strong enough to where he can overcome that rather easily with the right coaching, and he has been inconsistent with his effort. If we’re being fair, I’d have problems getting ready to go to battle with Brian Kelly as my head coach and Brandon Wimbush and Ian Book playing QB.

128. San Francisco 49ers (via Pittsburgh) – G/T Alex Cappa, Humboldt State

Mar 1, 2018; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Humboldt State Lumberjacks offensive lineman Alex Cappa speaks to the media during the 2018 NFL Combine at the Indianapolis Convention Center. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

I went from being an Alex Cappa skeptic to him being one of my draft crushes.

Playing for Division II Humboldt State, Cappa physically overpowered all of his opponents and had some of the most violent finishes I’ve ever seen. When asked to replicate that performance at the Senior Bowl, Cappa did not disappoint. He showed that same power, aggression, and violence to every defender that stepped in his way.

Of course, coming from a small school he has some deficiencies in his game that need some ironing out. He often played too high in pass protection and would get driven back way too easily. He also had problems getting hand placement on an island. Combining this with his great run blocking ability, Cappa’s best fit seems to be inside at guard in the NFL, where the 49ers happen to have a need.

He might not start right away, but I’d bet on him becoming a proficient starter in the NFL at guard.

143. San Francisco 49ers (via NYJ) – P Michael Dickson, Texas

Dec 27, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Texas Longhorns punter Michael Dickson (13) punts the ball during the game against the Missouri Tigers in the 2017 Texas Bowl at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Ok, hear me out.

The 49ers have a punter on the roster that they spent a 5th round pick on in 2015 (Bradley Pinion) who has been serviceable. However, Michael Dickson is one of the greatest punters I have ever seen, at any level, and would be well worth this selection.

Bradley Pinion ranked 15th in the NFL in net punting average and just 29th overall in total punt average. Dickson was unreal for the Texas Longhorns in 2017, leading the nation in net punting average (), total punting average, and punts inside the 20.

Dickson is the type of weapon at punter that can change games, like Johnny Hekker or Brett Kern. He was MVP of the Texas Bowl for crying out loud, averaging 41 yards per punt with 10 of 11 inside the opponent’s 15-yard line (with 7 inside the 10 and 4 inside the 5) and zero touchbacks. He is unbelievable. I very rarely get this excited about punters, but Dickson gets me fired up.

184. San Francisco 49ers – WR Dylan Cantrell, Texas Tech

Oct 28, 2017; Norman, OK, USA; Texas Tech Red Raiders wide receiver Dylan Cantrell (14) during the game against the Oklahoma Sooners at Gaylord Family – Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

This year’s combine workout warrior was definitely Texas Tech WR Dylan Cantrell. Cantrell posted the top performances in the shuttles and the 3 cone drill, and was top 3 in the broad and vertical jumps. His 40-yard dash time was only 4.59, but agility and explosiveness at 6’3”, 226 got me intrigued.

His film was the typical Texas Tech receiver film. A lot of deep and sideline passes that allowed Cantrell to show off his body control, leaping ability, and hands. But also showing his deficiencies when forced to play against man or press coverage. And his lack of long speed showed with his inability to create consistent separation.

Cantrell is a late round flier for the 49ers to take a chance banking on his athleticism as a developmental prospect. He’d help his chances of sticking on the team if he can play special teams, which I didn’t see him do in college.

209. San Francisco 49ers (via MIA from LAR from KC) – TE Jordan Akins, Central Florida

Sep 17, 2016; Orlando, FL, USA; Central Florida Knights tight end Jordan Akins (88) runs with the ball during the second half of a football game against the Maryland Terrapins at Bright House Networks Stadium. Maryland won 30-24 in double overtime. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Jordan Akins was a fun prospect to study after I learned about his baseball background. Akins was a 3rd round draft pick by the Texas Rangers in 2010, spending 4 years in the minor leagues.

Upon his return to the gridiron, Akins showed a lot of potential as a move tight end thanks to his athleticism and receiving ability. He high points the ball well in the air and showed the ability to consistently get open from the slot.

Unfortunately, Akins has an uphill battle to get drafted despite his talent. Akins is not a good blocker and might never become anything more than an average one, but it’s his age that hurts him. Akins turned 26 earlier this month, and that will keep many teams from spending a pick on him.

I believe Akins will be worth a late-round selection because of his ability right now, and the fact that he’ll be a solid receiving threat at least until his rookie deal is up.

223. San Francisco 49ers (via MIA) – OT Greg Senat, Wagner

Dec 17, 2016; Providence, RI, USA; Wagner Seahawks forward Greg Senat (35), guard Corey Henson (0), and Providence Friars guard Jalen Lindsey (21) scramble for the ball during the second half at Dunkin Donuts Center. The Friars won 76-54. Mandatory Credit: Brian Fluharty-USA TODAY Sports

Wagner’s Greg Senat is the definition of a project when it comes to offensive line prospects.

 

The ex-basketball player is incredibly raw in both pass and run blocking, showing inconsistent hand placement, poor leverage ability, a poor anchor, and a lack of functional strength, because he needs to add more mass to his monster 6’6” frame.

So why is he considered draftable? His athleticism shows up very well in how he plays. He is explosive out of his sets and glides effortlessly with the fluidity of his hips. His large frame is also a massive plus because he can keep defenders out of the inside of his body once he gets stronger and better technique wise.

He’d be a fun project for John Benton and could very easily be stashed on the practice squad this season.

240. San Francisco 49ers (via KC) – LB/S Foye Oluokun, Yale

Aug 28, 2016; Jacksonville, FL, USA; NFL footballs lay on the ground during pregame warmups of a football game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Cincinnati Bengals at EverBank Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

The 49ers round out their 2018 draft with a versatile, athletic defender from the Ivy League.

Foye Oluokun played both safety and linebacker for Yale and showed off his elite athleticism at his pro day. His athleticism pops out on tape as he effortlessly glided all over the field and shut down opposing receivers/tight ends/running backs. He also tackled very well, pointing to his potential as an elite special teamer in the NFL, while also showing enough developmental talent to work his way into the rotation at the WILL.

The obvious shortcomings of Oluokun come from his lack of top competition that allowed him to rely on athleticism rather than technique and he needs a lot of work learning how to diagnose plays and read the offense, rather than just using his speed to compensate.

The 49ers also hosted him for an official visit.

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