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2011 NFL Mock Drafts: Compiling The 49ers Picks On SB Nation, AFC And NFC North

Over at SB Nation Bay Area, I published a lengthy update taking a look at the 49ers draft picks, as viewed by SB Nation's other team blogs. I started with the intention of doing all of them, but after finishing two divisions, I had over 1000 words, so I've decided to break them up into multiple updates. Between the NFC and AFC North divisions, I found five "official" mock drafts, from Baltimore Beatdown, Cincy Jungle, Behind The Steel Curtain, Dawgs By Nature and the Daily Norseman. That's Ravens, Bengals, Steelers, Browns and Vikings, if you couldn't tell.

So before I provide a quick rundown, here's a link to the update, which you should click and read over in full. The first thing that became abundantly clear to me was that other teams fans and writers had the perception that the 49ers would absolutely grab one of the top two quarterbacks if given the opportunity, and I have to wonder where this comes from. I understand it's easy to think "49ers need a quarterback, here's one of the top quarterbacks," but a little perspective never hurt. Not that it's inherently impossible for Blaine Gabbert or Cam Newton to end up wearing the red and gold in 2011, but it became a trend to see "If Newton and Gabbert are both gone, I can see them picking ..." and things of that nature, when here on Niners Nation it's more of "If Peterson and Miller are both gone, I can see them picking ..."

Again, it's not something that we should disqualify completely, but it does seem like an overly-simplified line of thinking. It's something to be expected though, I imagine if we considered the needs of other teams around the league, we'd go with some "trendy" scenarios ourselves.

Prince Amukamara was the pick in three of the five mocks looked at, while Blaine Gabbert and Von Miller were the other two. Pay close attention to Baltimore Beatdown's mock, in which the 49ers ended up with Von MIller, Ras-I Downling and Shane Vereen, the running back out of Cal. That's an outside linebacker, cornerback and running back in the first three rounds, certainly a great scenario with the level of talent available at that point, but there's one problem ... the 49ers still would need a quarterabck. Looking over that scenario though, there might be some QB options still available in the fourth round, which would be a dream scenario for the 49ers. I think Vereen gets taken before the third round, but if he's around, I take him faster than you can say "Alex Smith for starting quarterback in 2011!"

Lastly, SB Nation released their latest mock draft today, and the 49ers ended up with Patrick Peterson, out of LSU. Can I get an "awww yeeeeeeah?"

7. San Francisco 49ers: Patrick Peterson, CB, LSU. To this point in this scenario, this is the best convergence of talent and need that we've seen. The 49ers desperately need a playmaker in their secondary, and Peterson is the best to come along in years. If he lasts this long, the 49ers will snap him up quickly.