Wednesday afternoon, everyone's favorite (or least favorite) "draft expert", Mel Kiper Jr. released his first mock draft of the 2014 NFL Draft season. Kiper seemed to be going for a little bit of shock value with his first mock. He projects Johnny Manziel to the Houston Texans with the No. 1 pick. His reasoning is that he is hearing word that Manziel goes Top-5. Personally, I imagine it's as much to generate buzz, but hey, we're talking about it.
In his mock draft, Kiper has the 49ers selecting LSU wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. Here are Kiper's thoughts on Beckham and the 49ers:
Analysis: The 49ers have been a different team with a healthy Michael Crabtree, but I don't think they should be in the position again of having only one wide receiver with a really dynamic skill set on the roster given how much Crabtree not being healthy limited the offense. Beckham's top trait is great acceleration, which can force cornerbacks to give him space or risk press coverage, where he also has quick feet and does a decent job of clearing without too much route disruption. He has good hands, which also helps in the return game, where he's been good.
In case you're wondering, here are the wide receivers that Kiper projected in the first round:
5. Raiders - Sammy Watkins, Clemson
13. Rams - Mike Evans, Texas A&M
18. Jets - Marqise Lee, USC
22. Eagles - Kelvin Benjamin, Florida State
28. Panthers - Brandin Cooks, Oregon State
30. 49ers - Odell Beckham Jr, LSU
32. Seahawks - Allen Robinson, Penn State
The 49ers could use some big red zone weapons, but Beckham has potential as a home run threat. Vernon Davis is the 49ers primary home run threat, but it would be nice to add someone who can do that when Davis is kept in as a blocker. Home run threats are great, but they also can strike out. It could make for a huge impact player, someone who is wildly inconsistent, or potentially right in the middle. I can only imagine the potential roller-coaster on which he could take 49ers fans.
Our friends over at And the Valley Shook put together a nice little retrospective on his career. It's safe to say they enjoyed his time quite a bit.
Thoughts on Odell Beckham? The draft process over the next few months will change a lot of things, so we can only consider so much with regard to specific players. However, the types of players being considered can still provide a basis for discussion. Do the 49ers look for a game-breaker receiver, or another big, bulky receiver who they can go to in the red zone?
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