The San Francisco 49ers have the 15th overall selection in the upcoming NFL Draft this April. That's not such a bad thing, since there should be some decent talent on the board at the point. But, then, it's a really bad thing because we would really prefer to be picking at 32, right?
Now, this is a bad way to keep people interested in my words, but I have to be up front with you all: I am not a draft expert. I also don't have really bad hair. This is why I am doing this for funsies and not getting paid the big bucks, or even the little bucks. Anyway!
I used Fanspeak's simulator for this purpose, which a fun -- albeit super inaccurate -- way to figure out who the team will take come spring. But you should whip through this thing a few times if you have some minutes to burn. You could even post your results in the comments below! We will allow that!
Round 1: Kevin White, WR, West Virginia
The mock draft gods were kind to me, and allowed the guy many want to slip right into our hands. This was, of course, a very easy pick and I don't even remember who else was on the board at the time. At 6'3" and 210 pounds, White brings size and vertical speed, making him a threat in the middle of the field or on the perimeter.
Round 2: Danielle Hunter, DE, LSU
The Niners have injury, age, development and personal issues along the defensive line of late. Less of a pass rusher, and more of a run stopper, Hunter was the best available prospect on the board that matched the teams needs when I made this pick. A solid tackler, and good at getting his hands up to block passes, I like what he brings to shore up the defensive line.
Round 3: Todd Gurley, HB, Georgia
So, I wanted a cornerback or defensive tackle here. And while Gabe Wright (a solid 4-3 DT) was available, we just don't have evidence that suggests the team really will be switching to a 4-3 base defense next season. There just wasn't a solid 3-4 DT/DE or CB on the board that could talk me out of gambling on Gurley. With Gurley's health concerns, Carlos Hyde on the roster, Kendall Hunter returning and a potential Frank Gore re-signing looming, this was a tough pick to make. At the end of the day, Gurley could be an absolute star and I felt I could fill the team's more pressing needs based on guys I liked further down the board.
Round 4: Joey Mbu, DT, Houston
My gamble paid off, kinda. While the team may need to fill this position sooner rather than later, I like Mbu as a future starter. He improved markedly at Houston after not being highly recruited out of high school. While he still needs to improve his footwork and hands, he became a three-year starter and team captain. Known for calling out offensive plays pre-snap, I think this is a guy with a high football IQ, and the desire to learn. Could be a wonderful project for Jim Tomsula that pays dividends in a year or two.
Round 5: Charles Gaines, CB, Louisville
This pick was between Gaines and Utah's Eric Rowe. While Rowe had the size advantage, he may project better moving back to safety in the NFL. Gaines probably has a better shot to stick at corner in the league, and provides an option as a kick returner.
Round 6: Deontay Greenberry, WR, Houston
Though his production dipped from a solid 2013 campaign that saw him rack up 1,202 yards and 11 touchdowns, Greenberyy is a big target at 6'3", 200 pounds. A former five-star recruit out of Fresno that spurned offers from the likes of Notre Dame and USC to play at Houston offers intrigue and upside for me.
Round 7: Deshazor Everett, CB, Texas A&M
With no quarterback remaining on the board that inspired me -- those still there surely could be undrafted free agents -- I went with a big cornerback in Everett. Aside form his name that just screams badass, the 6'0" 193 pounder is a good tackler that could also be an option at free safety -- something worth having around considering Eric Reid's concussion issues.
I don't know that I had the most inspiring draft, or one that fills too many immediate needs, but there's some upside and excitement in there.
What do you think? Run your own on Fanspeak and let us know what you came up with.