Just as we were getting ready for the San Francisco 49ers to select their next "great" cornerback, the team decided they were not prepared to pull the trigger with the 76th overall pick. Instead, they moved down four spots to number 16. It sounds like the 49ers added a sixth round pick in the trade, which would give them three 6th round picks at this point. When they came up at the 80th overall position, the 49ers then selected South Carolina defensive back Chris Culliver.
I have to say this is a curious pick at best given some of the DBs that were still available, as well as some talent at other position. One scouting report:
Injuries are clearly a red flag as Culliver heads into the NFL. He also needs to work on his angles when defending the run and he gets lost in coverage a little too frequently. At the same time, though, his potential is enormous. Culliver has good size at 6'0'' and 199 pounds and he has been clocked as fast as 4.32 in the 40-yard dash. A versatile defender, Culliver played both free safety and cornerback during his stay in South Carolina. As if his athletic prowess was not already obvious, he turned in a 38.5'' vertical jump at the combine. Based on raw talent, at least one NFL team should take a chance on Culliver in the third or fourth round of the upcoming draft.
He actually sounds like he projects to safety more than anything else, so I'd say curious is the most optimistic term I can use with this pick.
For informational purposes, here are the remaining 49ers picks:
1. Fourth round, No. 18 (115th overall, from San Diego in 2010 draft-day trade)
2. Sixth round, No. 9 (174th overall)
3. Sixth round, No. 17 (182nd overall)
4. Sixth round, No. 25 (190th overall, from Seattle for DT Kentwan Balmer)
5. Seventh round, No. 8 (210th overall)
6. Seventh round, No. 30 (230th overall, from Detroit for QB Shaun Hill) (Jets original pick in the round)
7. Seventh round, No. 38 (238th overall, compensatory)
8. Seventh round, No. 49 (249th overall, compensatory)
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