*While I'm always interested in talking prospects, I'm really looking for more of a discussion about the relative merits of the trade up strategy rather than the specific names that I'm throwing out here*
SF has two consensus primary needs (WR and CB) and a handful of secondary needs that may or may not get filled in this draft based on how it plays out. I've seen some analysts suggest (and I happen to agree) that the real value in this draft is in the 20-40 range. So, my thinking is, why not move up aggressively to fill both of those primary needs in this range with high-caliber prospects who are ready to go right away, and then fill secondary needs as they fall to us. I present to you, NN FanPost Browsers, for your consideration, the "Attack the Draft" aggressive trade up strategy.
Trade Up #1 - Picks 30 and 94 to Green Bay for pick 21
With the 21st pick, San Francisco selects Odell Beckham Jr., WR, LSU
One primary need out of the way. "OBJ" combines speed, athleticism, great hands, precise route running and big game experience with a large catch radius. He is great at high pointing the ball despite his height and dangerous after the catch. A complete package at WR who can also contribute in the return game (bye-bye, LaMike).
Trade Up #2 - Picks 56 and 61 to New England for pick 29
With the 29th pick, San Francisco selects Jason Verrett, CB, TCU
Verrett is essentially a stand in for "top CB on the board," whether that's Verrett, Fuller, Dennard or Roby. I think Verrett is likely to be the top CB left at this point. If he were two inches taller, he'd be a potential top-5 pick. His skills tracking the ball and mirroring receivers is elite, and he has great athleticism and toughness (19 reps on the bench with a torn labrum!) to back it up. Capable of playing on the boundary as well as in the slot.
#77 - Deone Bucannan, S, Washington State
Bethea will be the Niners' strong safety for at least the next 2 seasons, but they should look to find his replacement earlier rather than later, especially if Bucannan falls into the third round. A true strong safety who doesn't mind sticking his nose into plays, Bucannan will need some development as a cover safety - but with a couple years to learn, he has all the tools to make it happen.
#100 - Josh Mauro, DE/DT, Stanford
Oft described as "country strong," Mauro has played both 3-4 DE and 4-3 DT and would give the Niners another option on the defensive line. While he's not an explosive rusher who's going to blow plays up in the backfield, he holds his ground well and eats up blocks.
#129 - Brandon Thomas, OT/OG, Clemson
The required medical redshirt pick. Considered a 2nd round talent before tearing his ACL in predraft workouts, Thomas projects to kick inside to OG at the next level, where he could be Mike Iupti's replacement if he's lost to free agency in 2015.
#170 - Storm Johnson, RB, UCF
Someone to add to the RB platoon, Johnson is a crafty between the tackles runner who can grind out tough yards. Exactly what the Niners expect out of their backs. His stock is rising, so he may not be available this late in the draft.
#242 - Jonathan Newsome, OLB, Ball State
Transfer from Ohio State who was able to make a name for himself in the MAC. Played both DE and OLB in a 4-3, could compete for reps at OLB for us. Also a potential ST contributor. Potential character concerns.
#243 - Connor Shaw, QB, South Carolina
Developmental QB project. Shaw is a gamer with dual-threat abilities. Would probably be a 3rd stringer or PS guy but could develop into a solid backup or trade bait with time.
#245 - Tevin Reese, WR, Baylor
Speed, speed, speed. Reese is slight with questionable hands and an underdeveloped route tree, but he has the kind of speed that makes defensive coordinators adjust their entire game plans around. Worth a late-round flier on.