Doing it Over: Looking back at the 49ers 2006 draft

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 14: Vernon Davis #85 of the San Francisco 49ers catches a 49 yard pass from Alex Smith #11 (not pictured) to score a touchdown in the first quarter against the New Orleans Saints during the NFC Divisional playoff game at Candlestick Park on January 14, 2012 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

After a bit of a break it's time to get back to reviewing the 49ers past drafts. This time around it's the 2006 draft, notable for bringing us Vernon Davis and Manny Lawson, among others.

1st round--Vernon Davis TE Maryland
1st round--Manny Lawson LB North Carolina State
3rd round--Brandon Williams WR Wisconsin
4th round--Michael Robinson WR Penn State
5th round--Parys Haralson DE Tennessee
6th round--Delanie Walker WR Central Missouri State
6th round--Marcus Hudson DB North Carolina State
6th round--197 Melvin Oliver DE Louisiana State
7th round--254 Vickiel Vaughn DB Arkansas

Vernon Davis (Pick #6)
I don't think there's much that I need to say about Vernon Davis. I do have one issue with this pick. The Broncos were doing their best to try to move up in the draft because they also wanted to target Vernon Davis. They'd offered the Jets two first round picks to move up to #3, and supposedly had offered to swap firsts (#6 to #15), plus their #22 pick and a 3rd round. I'm not sure any TE is worth turning down two picks, but the 49ers still ended up with an extra first round pick.

Grade: A
Other than the supposed trade offer I can't find much of a reason to knock this trade. Homerun in every aspect.

Manny Lawson (Pick #22)
I know that I'm infamous around these parts for my distaste of Manny Lawson, however I've recently changed my ways. Although his sack numbers were never all that impressive, that was more a result of how he was used than any lack of pass rushing ability on his part. He was mostly used to drop back into coverage while the other OLB rushed. When he did rush he was actually more effective than our other OLBs.

Grade: A
The team didn't use him to the best of his abilities, but the 49ers did get a pretty good OLB with superior coverage skills.

Brandon Williams (Pick 84)
I have no recollection of Brandon Williams. Probably because he played for the 49ers for one season, was sent to the Rams the next, and then was gone from the league. His lone season with the 49ers he had 22 receptions for 147 yards and 0 TDs.

Grade: D
At least he played. Again, for a 3rd round pick you only get an F if he doesn't even make the roster.

Michael Robinson (Pick 100)
I was always a big fan of M-Rob as a special teams leader and was pretty upset when the 49ers let him go. Not a very effective offensive player by any means he was still a special teams stud. He re-signed with the Seahawks again this season so the 49ers will face him twice.

Grade: B
Not a consistent starter but he was a significant contributor to the team.

Parys Haralson (Pick 140)
I often forget that Haralson was drafted in the 5th round. As such he's been a remarkably productive player given the low draft status. Not a great OLB by any means, but a decent enough starter. He put up a great year in 2008 with 8 sacks, but managed only 2 sacks last year due to splitting time with Aldon Smith. Although it looks bad in comparison it doesn't seem so bad when you realize that Haralson was only used as a rusher about 1/3rd of his snaps (176 snaps in total that he rushed the passer).

Grade: A
I have to give this one an A. Getting a 5 year starter out of the 5th round is pretty impressive, all things considered.

Delanie Walker (Pick 175)
Walker has been a presence on the team since he was drafted. He's filled in the second TE role in a decent way. (As an amusing side note--I found a Denver Broncos fan forum where one poster wanted the Broncos to move up with their picks and draft Vernon Davis and then pick up Delanie Walker). In 2011 Walker was used mostly as a blocking TE due to Harbaugh's power offense, but he had three touchdowns, one of them the game winner vs Detroit. In 2010 he had his most prolific season as a receiver with 331 yards, but 0 TDs.

Grade: A
He started 7 games last season and 36 for his career. For a 6th round pick that's pretty impressive. He's actually outplayed his draft position by quite a bit--probably should have been drafted in the 4th.

Marcus Hudson (Pick 192)
Hudson was a non-entity for the 49ers. He dressed for 48 games for the 49ers, played one season with the Panthers where he recorded all of 8 sacks and wasn't in the league in 2011. During his 4 years with the 49ers he had 49 tackles, 3 PD, and 1FF.

Grade: D
Only thing keeping it from an F is the fact that he made the roster and recorded a few stats. At this point in the draft only players who don't make the team get F grades.

Melvin Oliver (Pick 197)
Got some playing time his rookie year but did absolutely nothing with it despite starting 14 games. During that time he recorded 1 sack and 43 tackles. He got hurt, spent some time on IR and then was waived.

Grade: D
A complete non-entity on the field. The team might have been better off to go and get an UDFA

Vickiel Vaughn (Pick 254)
Didn't even make the roster. Spent some time on the Dallas and Denver practice squads and is now out of the league.

Grade: F
If a player doesn't even make the roster then why bother drafting him?

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