Late last week, I posted a scouting report on running back LaMichael James, courtesy of SB Nation's Oregon blog, Addicted To Quack. Today, we move on to our next draft write-up, courtesy of SB Nation's Wake Forest blog, Blogger So Dear. The 49ers drafted former Demon Deacons' offensive guard Joe Looney with the intention of slotting him into the right guard battle this summer.
The 49ers right guard battle is shaping up to be one of the most interesting of the preseason. There has been some discussion of Alex Boone and Anthony Davis potentially getting some preseason work at guard, but I would not be surprised if the 49ers were hoping Daniel Kilgore or Joe Looney took firm control of the right guard position.
Martin Rickman, managing editor of BSD, took a few minutes to discuss some of Looney's strengths and weaknesses as he prepares to enter the NFL. Thanks to Martin for taking a few minutes to discuss Looney.
Joe Looney was one of the most highly-touted offensive line recruits that Wake Forest has ever had coming into college. He was big, strong and was the centerpiece to what was a "new" batch of offensive line recruits. He was a fierce competitor on the field every snap and a terrific representative of Wake Forest, as his outgoing personality and can't-miss hair could be found all over campus and at plenty of different Demon Deacon sporting events. Looney is a lead-by-example kind of guy, and his charisma and work ethic showed.
Looney transitioned to guard, and the move was a good one for him. He is good in run blocking, and can get out and pull for sweep plays. He had some tremendous pancakes, and his strength will serve him well at the next level. He's a really smart guy and should fit in San Francisco's offensive schemes quite nicely.
While I don't anticipate Looney starting right away, if he can improve in pass protection, he has the potential to play for a long time. He needs to get better against quicker defenders, and far too often would get bull-rushed if there was a speedy linebacker coming through the gaps on three and five step drops. He also struggled at times on picking up the rush if he didn't already have an assignment. This is something good line coaches should be able to address and allow him to get better.
Looney has a mean streak on the field, but off it he's easy-going with a good sense of humor and should be a great addition to the San Francisco community. Temper your expectations early, but I think you guys got a good one in Joe. The Dolphins were really high on him, as well.