The San Francisco 49ers executed three trades during the 2015 NFL Draft, with the San Francisco 49ers trading down twice, and trading out of a round entirely. David Neumann broke down the deals, concluding the team gained 121 cents on the dollar, with the net value equaling pick No. 118 overall.
Earlier this week, Bill Barnwell put together his own assessment of all the draft-day trades, adding context by rankings teams against each other. He came up with some different numbers for the 49ers, but he still had the 49ers finishing in a strong position. In fact, he had the 49ers coming away with the best net gain on the day.
Barnwell included two of the 49ers trades in his ten most lop-sided deals. The 49ers-Cowboys deal that netted the 49ers a 2016 sixth round pick for their 2015 seventh round pick was No. 10. He viewed the seventh round pick as essentially nothing. While obviously the 49ers could score with that pick, in the broad scheme of every seventh round pick ever made, the odds were long of the 49ers scoring on that pick.
The 49ers-Chargers deal in the first round ranked seventh. It was interesting because Barnwell assessed this deal in the context of moving up two spots to grab a running back. It is interesting because the 49ers made their third trade to grab a punter in the fifth round, which also seemed an odd use of the resource. David Neumann had the deal equating out to the 49ers getting 79 cents on the dollar for that trade.
Barnwell did not break that one down, but it would seem he did not value it quite as badly. In the end, he had the 49ers gaining the most value with their trades. He had the 49ers gaining the equivalent of the 81st overall pick, which would be a mid-third rounder. Washington was right behind with the equivalent of pick No. 82, and the Rams were next with the equivalent of pick No. 109. The Chargers and Seahawks were ranked the worst, giving up the equivalent of pick No. 88 with their netted trades.
And if you want a less objective take on this, Peter King praised Baalke's trade performance:
No one plays the futures trading game better than Baalke. He held the 15th pick of the first round, and the worst-kept secret in football leading up to the draft was that San Francisco was over-the-top smitten with Oregon defensive end Arik Armstead. Here was Armstead, available at 15. But here came San Diego, picking 17th, desperately wanting to get up to pick Melvin Gordon, fearful that Houston, at 16, might. Baalke got San Diego's fourth-round pick this year and fifth-round pick in 2016, and still got Armstead picking at 17 ... at a savings of about $725,000 in first-round-slotting-system contract dollars because Baalke got him two picks later. Baalke also traded a pick 10 slots from the bottom of the draft, number 246 overall, and flipped that to Dallas for a 2016 sixth-rounder. So the Niners enter the offseason with a league-high nine picks in the 2016 draft.