The NFL kicked off Week 14 of the 2017 NFL season on Thursday night, and we are now eight days away from the first bowl game of the 2016-17 college postseason. That means mock drafts are picking up steam as the top of the draft order slowly sorts itself out. If the San Francisco 49ers lose to the New York Jets, they will all but lock up the No. 2 pick. If they beat the Jets, they will either hold the No. 2 or No. 3 pick depending on the Jaguars and strength of schedule stuff, but they will remain high up.
And so, we now have our first two-round mock draft of the 2017 NFL Draft season. Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller took a look at two rounds of picks in his latest scouting notebook. For the 49ers, he has them grabbing Alabama inside linebacker Reuben Foster in the first round, and
Miami (Fl) quarterback Brad Kaaya Clemson quarterback DeShaun Watson in the second round. (Fooch’s note: I misread the mock)
Foster recently won the Butkus Award, which goes to the top linebacker in college football. The 49ers lost both NaVorro Bowman and Ray-Ray Armstrong to season-ending injuries this season. Bowman will look to get back for next season, while Armstrong is a free agent. Even if both are back next season, the team needs to consider long-term implications. I have not seen Foster going this high in other mock drafts, but you never know how highly he will be valued next April.
The top of the 2017 quarterback class is kind of messy at the moment. UNC’s Mitch Trubisky, Clemson’s DeShaun Watson, and Notre Dame’s DeShone Kizer have been discussed among the options. Miller has Watson dropping into the second round, but there has been plenty of chatter about him as a first round pick. I suspect however that the quarterback position will have little consistency in mock drafts between different analysts.