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49ers pre-draft visits begin with Shrine Game

The San Francisco 49ers have begun visiting with players in advance of the 2015 NFL Draft. They reportedly visited with three players on Monday following Shrine Game practice.

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The 2015 East-West Shrine Game takes place this Saturday, which means the participating players are practicing throughout the week. The game is the one of several opportunities the next two weeks where scouts can view a large group of players in a very specific football environment. They will all get to meet up at the NFL Combine, but the underwear Olympics do not provide the same football environment as a week of practice at the the Shrine Game, NFLPA Collegiate Bowl or Senior Bowl.

This also means teams are beginning to get to know players in a face-to-face environment. To date, teams have been breaking down tape, and maybe speaking with college coaches (I'm not sure the rules on that), but they have usually not had interactions with the players. Last year, we tried to track whatever we could with regard to visits, and came up with this tracker. The 49ers ended up drafting Aaron Lynch from that group.

The Shrine Game provides one of several opportunities to begin the visits, and the San Francisco 49ers are reportedly already getting that process underway. According to Walter Football, the 49ers conducted at least three player visits on Monday. They list them as interviews, and the site describes them as on-field visits after practice that would potentially set up longer, more formal interviews during the week.

The Shrine Game gets some solid prospects, but not quite the same level as the Senior Bowl. We'll be tracking the players the 49ers visit with, but this week some might not have the scouting reports we will find for Senior Bowl players. For now, Walter Football is reporting 49ers officials spoke with the following players on Monday:

LB Taiwan Jones, Michigan State

OG/C Ben Beckwith, Mississippi State

QB/WR Devin Gardner, Michigan