FOOCH'S NOTE 11:40AM: Another very solid FanPost from Dre. Briandean is our primary draft scouting guy, but I thought this was worth pulling to the front page. We had a discussion earlier in the week about a potential draftable option to offset Frank Gore. Dre has gone into solid detail on specific examples. Let's hear your thoughts on these guys. If you've got some more details, feel free to comment. Same if you've got other options you think are quality options in the draft.
Hey guys, thought I'd throw out some opinion on the draft, and what players could be targeted (or I'd like to see targeted). I'm going to focus on running backs
and defensive backs here (ok, and Josh Freeman). The player's rankings/projections will be based on an average from 3 scouting sources (fftoolbox, NFL scout, and KFFL)
After doing the Running Backs, I realize there is no need to combine DBs or a QB in this group, and allow this to be a sole focus of the runners we may seek.
The Running Backs
Shonn Greene, Iowa: Probably our most explosive power back option in the draft. This guy is a big, menacing beast. Dominated the Big Ten in rushing in his senoir year by running for 1850 yards and 20 TDs, while averaging six per carry. At 5'11, 235 he's the big kind of back McCloughan and Singletary are referring to. This video shows he's got a little more than power.
Projection: Second to Third Round
Notable Combine stats: 4.63 40, 19 reps
Outlook: I don't think the 49ers should consider drafting him in 2nd round. Maybe take a long look at him in the third round, but I think we have too many other needs to be taking a running back in round 3 as well.
Javon Ringer, Michigan State: While I'm on the Big Ten, may as well put Ringer here too. After all, he was second to Greene in rushing, but led the Big Ten with 22 rushing TDs. Carried the ball 390 times in 2008, 224 the year prior while Shonn Green had less than 376 total in his career (missed 2007). Ringer can thump and scamper, but is just 5'9 202. With the amount of carries he's had in the past two years alone, his best years could already be behind him. Watch Ringer tear apart Notre Dame.
Projection: Fourth Round
Notable Combine stats: 4.6 40, 23 reps, 4.11 20 yd shuttle
Outlook: I don't think he's a back the Niners will be looking at drafting, especially considering his size. However, if Ringer slips to the 6th round, he'd be worth taking a look at.
Gartrell Johnson, Colorado State: I think the biggest upside of Gartrell Johnson is his massive set of legs. He has the look of a player that will keep moving his legs to find holes and make gains. His size (6', 225) is big, and in this video the LB actually looks afraid to tackle him. Another plus for Johnson is he has very few carries in his career at Colorado State, yet in his senior year he ran for 1476 and 12 TDs, and also averaged 5.3 ypc over the past two seasons. I think this guy has a lot of potential, and if you have a coach like Rathman that preaches toughness, Johnson will fit in nicely.
Projection: Fifth to Sixth Round
Notable Combine stats: 4.71 40, 20 reps
Outlook: I think if the Niners haven't drafted a back in the first 4 rounds, Johnson could be their selection in round 5 (or as one of our compensatory picks). His combine stats don't pop out at anyone, but the 4.71 40 he ran looked smooth.
Rashad Jennings, Liberty: If there was a guy who did nothing but improve his draft status at the combine, it was Jennings. Looking at his 3 year numbers from Liberty will also standout (46 total TDs, 5.7 ypc, 3633 yards). Ofcourse, that's all if you can see past his 6'1 230 frame. I think this guy is the mold that the 49ers desire to spell Frank. I couldn't find his senior year highlights, but his junior year was impressive.
Projection: 3rd Round.
Notable Combine stats: 4.64 40, 29 reps, 11.46 60 yd shuttle
Outlook: I think Jennings' combine may have put him into the late second round, but if the right scenario plays out, the Niners may select him in Round 3. I don't think Jennings will be anywhere on the board after round 3, and the Niners would have to use their 3rd round selection to get him.
Marlon Lucky, Nebraska: Consider this my wildcard prospect, as Marlon Lucky may not get much hype or mention at any point, ever again. However, he does posses some unique abilities, like lining up at QB in the Wildcat, and the ability to catch the ball (had 75 receptions in 2006). He is big, 6' 215 and is not slow, or easy to tackle. He could be a gem late in the draft, similar to Josh Morgan in round 6.
Projection: 7th Round/Undrafted
Notable Combine stats: 4.58 40, 18 reps
Outlook: I think somewhere in the seventh round, a team is going to seek his services, if not, I'd love to see the 49ers add him as an undrafted FA.