Scratch day 2 of the 2016 NFL draft off the charts. Yesterday, we saw something rather strange where San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke went with the obvious pick and then grabbed a guard later on. Today, however was a blast from the past, as Trent Baalke went to the injured list and added cornerback Will Redmond as the teams 3rd pick and the latest in Baalke's ACL All-Stars.
Unlike the last two picks, Redmond is a bit of a question mark on seeing the field. Baalke says that Redmond will be at training camp, and videos that have come out of Redmond seem promising, but this is an ACL injury. You never can put a timetable on these things.
The pick is a bit head scratching since the 49ers could have used a middle linebacker or more help on the offensive line (pull a Bill Walsh and just go O-line, O-line, O-line)
But I'm not a football expert. I just play one on the web. What do the real experts think?
Let's start with Si.com's Chris Burke who was rather positive on the 49ers' 3rd round selection, giving it a 'B' grade:
"This all comes down to the status of Redmond's knee, which he injured in 2015. Assuming he gets all the way to 100% in the near future, he has the instincts and quickness to be a playmaking slot corner, if not a versatile man/zone defender on the outside."
This is pretty optimistic, and if I wasn't such a pessimist, I'd probably go this route. But I'm in no way an optimist. I just don't see why to give this grade when there's so much available.
Apparently Burke isn't the only one. SB Nation's Dan Kadar also had some praise for the selection giving it a 'B-'
After trading back into the first round, the 49ers had to wait all the way until the No. 68 overall pick to take cornerback Will Redmond. If he can stay healthy, Redmond is the starting cornerback the 49ers needed to find in this draft. Redmond isn't a great tackler, but he can make plays.
A lot of this praise is all on that one special word: 'if'. And because of this 'if' I wonder why a 3rd round pick got burned for Redmond. 'If' seems more useful for a 5th rounder, not a 3rd.
Things get a bit more interesting, and less generous. Pete Prisco of CBS sports handed the grade a 'C':
"There were better options out there. This kid is coming off an ACL injury."
Or Pro Football Focus' grade of 'C+':
"Redmond is a solid zone defender that can read the quarterback's eyes, but that also gets him into trouble at times with double moves. His +1.3 coverage grade ranked 56th in the class, but he's yet another 6-foot corner that will get a chance to develop."
Or Mike Tanier of Bleacher Report who gave another 'C+':
He has all the tools but is a little bit of a black box; it's hard to project a player with limited starting experience and a recent major injury into the NFL.
I'll leave this with Yahoo! Sports. They definitely have the more positive outlook on the pick, giving a grade of 'B-', and I'm leaving with them because I really hope this is how everything turns out for the young man.
"Redmond is on the mend from a torn ACL that cut his final season in half, and he might never be a top-shelf outside corner. But he has good nickel potential and special teams value once he returns to health. A solid player who would have gone higher had he not gotten hurt."
Pretty mixed all around. Nothing above a 'B,' nothing below a 'C'. Just middle of the road, which really isn't what I'd want to have with a 3rd round pick. Especially where the 49ers picked. I do hope Redmond works out, but given the history of the 49ers ACL picks, I'm skeptical.
Now, what do all of you think?