It was noted by Matt Maiocco recently that teams can meet and talk with their drafted rookies from the time of drafting until the very end of the draft, which I find to be an interesting development. I just figured that there would be no contact at this point - make a phone call, let him know he's about to be playing for the San Francisco 49ers, and then everything would go into limbo - but I suppose not. This leads me to wonder if anything of value can come from those conversations, aside from the usual thing you'd like to hear from a rookie regarding whether or not they are happy to be coming to the Bay Area, what they're going to do right away, and things of that nature. Here's some more from Maiocco regarding what can actually be said, however:
But there is even a limit on what coaches can discuss with players after they've been drafted, the NFL told CSN Bay Area. "There can be no football instruction or activities involving drafted rookies," NFL spokesman Greg Aiello wrote in an email.
Right ... so, wink and a nod, nothing to see here, that kind of thing. It would not surprise me at all if teams broke that rule a myriad of times, including the 49ers. Obviously you can't hand out a playbook, and you can't tell the guy to start running drills for you right then and there, but can you talk a little bit about the offense you'll be running? Not technically, no ... maybe Jim Harbaugh just tells these guys "Hey, just go look at film of [comparable offense] whenever you get the chance .. it's an interesting watch, I tell you."
I'm just speculating and a bit unrealistically, admittedly, but I would guess that anything football related would be in relation to getting somebody up to speed as fast as they can on their own without an NFL offseason. Say, if they were to draft a quarterback, perhaps a gentle push in the right direction for a little solo study work could be in order.
The only caveat there I see is that the NFLPA (or whatever you want to call it, these days) are definitely advising players to tell them if anything is said, and they will be asking each and every draftee if a team gave them any insight as to football operations that was described as being not allowed. I'd suggest that the majority of draftees just want to play and don't want to get off on the wrong foot with their team, and won't divulge that information, but with our luck, we could get one of the guys in the minority.
Curious to see if any of you folks think something can come of this short window to talk to draftees. One thing I definitely do not see happening is money discussion - perish the thought of any "handshake" deals in your head right now - it's not going to happen.