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Trent Baalke on Will Redmond, Jaquiski Tartt role, Quinton Patton

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The San Francisco 49ers general manager met with the media on Friday. He discussed the plan for Will Redmond, the idea of Jaquiski Tartt as a linebacker, and Quinton Patton's recent injury. We've got a full transcript, and you can watch the press conference here.

With CB Will Redmond, you took him obviously in the beginning part of the third round. If this guy's healthy, where do you think he would have been going?

"I don't know, [CSN Bay Area reporter] Matt [Maiocco]. That would be a guess. We have him valued higher than where we took him. There's risk in all of this as we know. The injury, it was a very standard procedure. He's on schedule to slightly ahead of schedule. We've got a lot of contact with this young man. We know who did the surgery. We also know where he's rehabbing and who's rehabbing him. We brought him in for one of the 30 visits. We were just back in Indianapolis before the draft for the re-check. Very comfortable with where he's at and very comfortable that he'll be ready to go come training camp."

What kind of cornerback is he? How would you describe his skillset?

"Well, you start with the nickel stuff. He's a young man that can play inside and outside. We'll probably start him on the inside, but like I always say, that's for the coaches to decide. We really like his, explosive athlete. A guy that can run, can jump, can play the ball. Physical and fits into what we were looking for from a character standpoint. He's a quality, quality young man that on his visit here, impressed everybody that he came in contact with. So, we were excited to get him."

What's one thing that jumps out on tape when you watched him and reviewed his game film?

"Quickness. He's a quick-twitch athlete. He can stick his foot in the ground. He transitions very well and he's fearless. He's 5-10, he's 190 pounds, somewhere in that neighborhood and he's not afraid to stick his head in there. And when you go inside in the National Football League and you play the nickel position, that's a tough position to play because you've got to cover and hold up in the run game stuff. So, he's a young man that's proven he can do that, willing to do it and really high on the ceiling that he has."

Considering you guys have DB Jimmie Ward, you just spent a first round pick on and he plays that nickel position, was this a pick just of best player available? It doesn't seem to be a need for a guy who's solely a nickel type of player.

"Well, you can never have enough cover guys. As we know, in this game, 67-percent of what you do in this league is nickel and dime. And to get a young man that can come in here and compete, he can play outside and he can play inside. Jimmie does move down in the nickel and in the dime stuff too. So, there's going to be competition around and Jimmie's making the transition as well back to the back half at the safety position. So, the versatility of Jimmie to go along with the versatility of this young man and the versatility of the group, we got a lot of young players on that side that finally got some playing experience last year and I would look for that group to step up and really make that second-year jump for a lot of those guys, both as far as strength, knowledge of the game and just the understanding of NFL football."

As much as you can't have an assurance on something like this, do you feel very confident he's going to be able to play this year?

"Yeah. Like I said, there's a risk in all of this. We saw one young man that's coming off of an ACL go in the first round. We saw another one go just before this young man did. So, there's been three or four of them that have already gone in the Draft that sustained the same injury this season. It's part of the game. [Indianapolis Colts RB] Frank Gore had three of them in college, right? So, guys come back. Some come back even better. Most come back and every now and then, it doesn't work. But, once again, we're very confident in the procedure that was done, where he's at currently in his rehab schedule and just, we know how hard a worker he is. So, we're very confident in his ability to come back, be ready for training camp and be ready to go."

Is this a pick you feel comfortable making because you have so many young corners already there healthy and ready to compete for playing time this season?

"Well, once again, we think he is healthy and will be ready to go. So, this isn't a young man that we're saying we're going to bring him in and let him go through the six-week NFI and all that. This guy's going to come in and be ready to go for training camp and be thrust into that group to compete for a spot. We like the young group that we have and this only adds to it."

You guys drafted Washington Redskins CB Chris Culliver in the third round. Do you see similarities in both of their games?

"They're different guys. Chris was a six-foot-plus corner that played safety in college and also played some cornerback. So, just different guys. Similar athletes in some respects, but just different types of football players."

Do you envision S Jaquiski Tartt playing some linebacker this year or are you in the market for a player at that position?

"I think that's a better question for the coaches from a schematic standpoint. But, I think they visualize that ability, especially in our dime for him to slide down and be in a position where a lot of times you're using a linebacker. I think that would be the game plan, but the coaches can help you with that."

If you see Will more kind of on the inside, who are the cornerbacks you see on the outside? Who are the main guys?

"Well, you've got [CB Tramaine Brock] T-Brock, you've got [CB] Dontae [Johnson], you've got [CB Kenneth Acker] Ack, you've got [CB Keith] Reaser. This guy, like I said, Will can play inside, can play outside. I don't want to pigeonhole him as just a nickel, because he's not. In college he played both. He played inside and outside. Most of the time on the perimeter. But, he's got the skills to move inside and, like I said, cover in there as well as play the run in there, which is an added advantage."

Was there any temptation on your part to use this pick on a quarterback since there's a couple out there that you had interest in?

"Not really."

Or have you guys moved on from quarterback?

"Well, I wouldn't say that we've moved on from any position. So, whether that's quarterback, running back, any position there. We're going to trust the board and this was the highest rated young man on the board and we felt very comfortable with him at a position where we wanted to add some more competition, so we're excited about the pick."

We talked last week about guys coming off knee injuries. Most of the them, jury is still out on some of them, but a lot of them just haven't worked out at least to this point. People out there say it's hard enough to come into the NFL and make the transition. Why not just take a guy who comes in healthy, ready to go?

"He will be healthy. He will be ready to go. So, that's a simple answer to a simple question. There are no guarantees in this business. I've said that many times and I mean that in the right way. I'm not trying to be abrasive with that answer, but at the same time, he will be ready. We feel very good about where he's at and once again, he wasn't the first guy to come off the board who had an injury this season. There were several others that came off ahead of him. There is risk-reward in this business and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. We feel real good about where Keith Reaser is at right now coming off of his two years ago. Does it take some time? It does. But, we're confident in this young man being able to come back from it."

When you guys bring guys in for a visit, are you allowed to do physicals with them, for the official 30s?

"Yeah, we're allowed to do the whole nine yards. Whatever we want to do. We just can't work them out physically on the field. But, as far as giving them medical checks, taking more MRIs, that's one of the reasons we brought him in, to get more comfortable with not only with where he was at, but also get more comfortable with the individual. We spent a lot of time down at Mississippi State scouting. We had three scouts go in there, cross check the school, attended a couple of games. We had a lot of views on this young man and every time we were in personal contact with him, very impressed with him. Met with him at the Combine. Met with him here at the 30 visit. Met with him again at the Combine on the re-check. So, we had a lot of contact with this young man, and like I said, on every instance came away with the same feeling, we'd love to add him to program."

In terms of DL DeForest Buckner and G Joshua Garnett here, did you learn anything about seeing these guys here that you didn't know?

"No, what we knew. Obviously, they are big men. They are good guys and they've already developed a relationship, they've played against each other, there's some familiarity which helps them obviously as teammates coming into the locker room. We couldn't be happier with the way the first two days turned out. We've got a lot of work to do. I forget the number of picks we have left, is it seven or eight? Something like that. We've got a lot of work to do tomorrow. Feel really good about where we're at and feel there's some very good football players left on the board and now we've just got to go get them."

What's going on with WR Quinton Patton? Is he out for a while?

"He's sustained a little injury that he's working through. It's no big deal. You see him out there running. He's out there every day. I think the other day you guys were there he was out there running. He just can't participate in the drills at this point, but he'll be ready to go shortly."

By the end of the offseason program?

"Oh yeah."