We're doing a 'Live' mock draft over at SB Nation Bay Area, with about three picks a day, and we've just made the pick for the San Francisco 49ers. With Patrick Peterson, Von Miller and both quarterbacks off the board, the Niners have found themselves in a position to pick Marcell Dareus, the defensive lineman from Alabama - and they do so, with gusto. I could go over and over why I made this pick, but I'll just quote the piece right here.
Cornerback and outside linebacker are bigger needs for the 49ers, which is why they'd consider taking Prince Amukamara of Nebraska or Robert Quinn out of North Carolina here at seven, but drafting solely for need is never the best course of action. There are cases where you could say Amukamara is the best player available at seven, but not when Marcell Dareus is still on the board. ... He'll replace Isaac Sopoagaand improve what is already a strength, and maybe someone like Manny Lawson, already on the roster, looks better rushing the passer with Dareus abusing offensive linemen in front of him.
It doesn't address one of the top three needs for the 49ers, but he's one of the best players in the draft and he makes the team better any way you look at it. New defensive coordinator Vic Fangio can design a myriad of ways to use Dareus in blitz formations with his aggressive, movement-oriented defense.
If you recall, Dareus was projected to go around seven before the combine. Now that the combine has passed, folks are mocking him near the top. I'm sticking to my guns and I consider this a very likely circumstances, the only caveat being Denver at two. I might be persuaded to have Denver taking Dareus instead of Fairley, but I feel like the Auburn lineman can do what the Broncos need him to better than Dareus can.
This is a clear "best player available" scenario. The best strategy, in my opinion, is to use a combination of need and BPA, but right now the BPA aspect far outweighs the need, and like I've been saying over the past couple days, can you really be upset with this level of talent coming to the team, in any circumstance. I'm sure some of you will find a way to, so here's a poll on the matter for your consideration.