The NFL Combine is a tricky beast to figure out at times given the timing. We'll see some players blow up (RG3, Stephen Hill, Dontari Poe) and we'll see others blow their most important job interview (Vontaze Burfict). Those will leave a lasting impact, but with nearly two months remaining until the 2012 NFL Draft, the passion of the last few days will give way to some measure of cold, analytical coverage. I'm guessing after Sunday, the Rams wish the NFL Draft was tomorrow.
Outside of the number one pick, everybody else spends the time leading up to their pick likely hoping for a given player to fall to them. Every team's draft board will be different than others. Some will be drastically different, but I'd imagine some first round boards are not wildly different.
Given all that however, each team and particularly their fans sit and wait for a shocker pick to happen. Last year, Christian Ponder went considerably higher than a lot of people were projecting. For every team picking after the Vikings, that opened the door for a possible favored prospect to fall to them.
Picking at No. 30 means the 49ers likely can't focus in too hard on any given first round talent. They will have their eyes on some guys, but knowing that there are so many permutations of picks for the first 29, anything could happen to drop a guy in their laps or prevent them from getting their draft crush.
The 49ers do have a variety of needs, but defensive line is pretty low down the priority list. We saw Dontari Poe blow up the Combine yesterday with a monster performance in the drills. Maybe he would have gone ahead of the 49ers before, maybe not, but that performance should have done enough to blast him well past the 49ers.
Quarterback is another area the 49ers will not address early in the draft. After Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III, Ryan Tannehill is poised to be the next QB taken off the board. It remains to be seen who will jump on him, but the better they perform, the higher they might go, the more talent to drop to the 49ers.
Who else do you see boosting their stock enough to climb out of the second round and into the first round?