Seventh round draft choices don't often get a lot of attention during the offseason. They're expected to battle in training camp, but often, anything you get from them can be considered a bonus. Since the draft, Ricky Jean-Francois has gotten a hefty amount of discussion in part because he was considered a greater talent than where he went. That is certainly not a rarity.
However, our other seventh round choice, Curtis Taylor, a safety also out of LSU, has not gotten anywhere near as much attention. He is expected to battle Dashon Goldson and Mark Roman for playing time at the free safety position. I bring him up now because I found an interesting article from early last week that mentioned Taylor in quite the positive light.
A member of Football Outsiders wrote an article for ESPN discussing ten rookies who would make an immediate impact. It's an Insider article, so I'll pull out the relevant part. The article listed nine players in the first through third rounds. The tenth player was our very own Curtis Taylor. Here's what they had to say:
Curtis Taylor (FS, 49ers, Round 7, Pick 219)
Nearly every year, a late-round safety surprises and makes the starting lineup of an unsuspecting team. Our best guess for this year's surprise safety is Taylor, a talented athlete who started at LSU. He has some overpursuit and aggressiveness issues that can be coached away, and all that's in front of him is 32-year-old safety Mark Roman, who allowed over 10 yards per attempt in coverage last year. Taylor could bring an intimidating edge to a defense in which the most intimidating facet is on the sideline with a headset each week.
One problem with their point is the fact that in reality, Dashon Goldson is also in front of him for playing time as a free safety. If Goldson stays healthy (a big if), the job is his to lose. However, if he can't stay healthy, is it too crazy to think that Taylor could snatch the starting job?