On Monday, we took a look at the latest 2016 mock draft from Dan Kadar of SB Nation, a mock that included trades and saw the San Francisco 49ers in a position where both Jared Goff of Cal and Carson Wentz of North Dakota State were gone to the Cleveland Browns and Los Angeles Rams, respectively. The latter team traded up in the mock and nabbed Wentz, preventing the 49ers from being able to make a move.
But Kadar has also been running the SB Nation NFL writers mock, which has each of the team blogs from our network making the picks for their teams. On Tuesday, it was Fooch's turn to pick and he actually ended up with the same player that he ended up with in Kadar's mock draft: Oregon defensive end DeForest Buckner.
As part of this mock, Fooch gave an explanation for the pick, which you can see below:
The 49ers extended Quinton Dial and signed Ian Williams to a new contract this offseason, which seemingly pushed the defensive line down the priority list. Next thing we know, word gets out that Ian Williams had multiple offseason surgeries on his ankle and his five-year deal is turned into a one-year deal. I think the team could have still looked at the defensive line early without news of the injury, but this makes it a bigger deal. Williams has dealt with numerous injuries during his career, so the team cannot really rely on anything long-term with him. Once the Cowboys went quarterback, it dropped a quality defensive player to the 49ers. If Buckner slips to them, he makes a lot of sense.
On Monday, I said I wasn't the biggest fan of taking a defensive lineman with the No. 7 overall pick, even if it happens to be an incredible talent. But being upset about landing a guy like Buckner, a versatile weapon who is only slipping out of the top five in the draft due to serious needs from desperate teams who need a quarterback, is difficult to do.
In his analysis of the pick, Kadar says Buckner is "just a notch" below Joey Bosa, Myles Jack and Jalen Ramsey, and is clearly the player right behind them. He notes that if Arik Armstead pans out, he would pair well with Buckner and give the 49ers a "nice long-term solution" for their defensive front.
Prior to the 49ers' selection, Laremy Tunsil, Goff, Ramsey, Wentz, Jack and Bosa had all gone in that order.