SB Nation is putting together its now annual NFL blogger mock draft, and the San Francisco 49ers pick has arrived. I asked folks who intrigued them at No. 15, and after thinking it over, I found the guy I think fits the 49ers, and strikes me as a realistic possibility at No. 15: Texas defensive tackle Malcom Brown. You can read Mocking The Draft's assessment of the pick HERE.
The 49ers have several needs to address in the upcoming draft, and reasonable minds will differ on the priority list. On the defensive side of the ball, you could make an argument for cornerback. The 49ers lost Perrish Cox and Chris Culliver to free agency, and while the position has some talented options, they are all question marks.
On the offensive side of the ball, you could make an argument for wide receiver or even offensive line. The team signed Torrey Smith, but Anquan Boldin might not be around much longer, and Quinton Patton and Bruce Ellington still have a lot to prove. A first round wide receiver could build up that depth chart considerably. Mike Iupati's departure and Alex Boone entering the final year of his contract raises some questions about the stability of the guard positions. Even with Brandon Thomas potentially slotting in, there is always room for more help on the line.
I decided to go with defensive line. Whether or not Justin Smith retires, the line does not appear to have that guy that jumps out as someone we would expect to be there in five or six years (unexpected retirements and injuries aside). Tank Carradine is incredibly talented, but he is still working his way into the mix. Quinton Dial is arguably the closest of this group following a solid half season as the 49ers nose tackle. Darnell Dockett is a very short-term option, Tony Jerod-Eddie seems to have a ceiling of a very capable reserve, and anybody else is just a lottery ticket hoping for anything.
Adding Brown brings in a guy who the 49ers could hopefully count on as a rock on one side of the line. Additionally, he has experience in multiple positions in both 3-4 and 4-3 fronts. The 49ers are sticking with the 3-4 at this point, but if there ever were to be a change, Brown could very well make that transition. Versatility and talent are two big pluses!
Here is how the first 15 picks have gone in the blogger mock draft:
1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - QB Jameis Winston
2. Tennessee Titans - QB Marcus Mariota
3. Jacksonville Jaguars - OLB Beasley
4. Oakland Raiders - DT Leonard Williams
5. Washington - OT La'el Collins
6. New York Jets - WR Kevin White
7. Chicago Bears - DT Danny Shelton
8. Atlanta Falcons - OLB Randy Gregory
9. New York Giants - OT Brandon Scherff
10. St. Louis Rams - WR Amari Cooper
11. Minnesota Vikings - CB Trae Waynes
12. Cleveland Browns - WR DeVante Parker
13. New Orleans Saints - DE/OLB Dante Fowler
14. Miami Dolphins - RB Todd Gurley
15. San Francisco 49ers - DT Malcom Brown