The 2016 NFL Draft is less than a week away, and that means draft analysts are getting their last pieces of insight out to the public. Mike Mayock conducted a conference call on Friday, and as is always the case, he went into detail on a lot of prospects, and a lot of team needs.
Naturally, someone asked about the San Francisco 49ers quarterback position. I've posted the entire question and answer below. Mayock started with Colin Kaepernick and Blaine Gabbert, and the 49ers need to make a decision with those two. He went into several prospects, skipping over Jared Goff and Carson Wentz since they are expected to go 1 and 2. He also skipped over Connor Cook. The 49ers have done a lot of work on Cook, and mocks have suggested him to the team. Either he just overlooked him, or he recognizes that Cook's accuracy issues might not be ideal for Chip Kelly's offense.
Here's the question and answer for Mayock.
I wanted to ask you about Niners quarterback situation, obviously, and Chip Kelly. He had said that his ideal quarterback is a great decision maker that's going to protect the ball. What would you do to solve their quarterback quandary and which quarterback in this draft might be able to solve that in the first two rounds?
Mayock: Well, start with the fact that one of the few things that San Francisco did well last year, especially with the quarterback play is their quarterback's actually took care of the football. San Francisco is number four in the league in giveaways. They only gave it away 17 times. Gabbert had 8, Kaepernick had 6. 14 turnovers by your quarterback is amongst the best in the league so I'm by no means banging the table for either of them. I'm just saying they took care of the football last year, which as you said, is one of Chip Kelly's things.
So I'm not in that building. I don't know how they feel about either of their quarterbacks, Gabbert or Kaepernick. To me, that's decision number one as an organization. What are we doing at quarterback? Obviously, if you're willing to trade the guy, you probably aren't 100% committed to him, unless you just think he wants to get out of the building. So I'm not sure what they're doing with the veteran quarterback situations.
I think number 7 is probably too rich to be thinking about Paxton Lynch. I do like Paxton Lynch in his offense though. I mean, Paxton Lynch is a guy that's a year away from playing, but he's 6'7", and he's big and athletic. So he could be a fit. I'm not sure they're going to have an ability to trade down, and I don't think he'll be there in the second round. Then you start going down the list, who else would fit? Brandon Allen from Arkansas would be available in the fourth or fifth round. He's a guy that is athletic, tough, quick decision maker, gets the ball out. The wildcards are Cardale Jones and Christian Hackenberg, both of whom are big, strong guys, athletic, especially Jones, but their tape isn't great. San Francisco's going to have to make some decisions and it starts internally with the two quarterbacks on the roster.