The San Francisco 49ers could use an injection of depth at inside linebacker, and there is one more possibility entering the draft. Ohio State linebacker Raekwon McMillan announced on Wednesday that he will forego his remaining eligibility and enter the 2017 NFL Draft.
McMillan finished the 2016 season with a team-leading 102 tackles, including seven for a loss. He also had 2.0 sacks, five pass defensed, and two forced fumbles. Last year, he had 119 tackles (four for a loss), 1.5 sacks, four passes defensed, and one fumble recovery.
Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller has him going to Washington in the second round at pick No. 49. Scouts Inc ranks him the No. 32 prospect on their big board. Scouts Inc likes his tackling skills his ability to range, but they downgrade him him for his coverage skills and general third down work. They had this to say:
Off the field on some obvious pass downs. Adequate range in zone coverage. Instincts are improving in this area. Showing better understanding of route combos and faster eyes picking up crossers. Has some tightness and will struggle to match up one-on-one versus quicker RBs. Has closing burst as a pass rusher but limited upside in this area. Doesn't show much of a counter when reached as a blitzer.
NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah discussed McMillan in a scouting report last summer. He liked McMillan’s size, physicality, and strength. He thought McMillan could improve playing in space and as a blitzer.
The 49ers currently have NaVorro Bowman, Ray-Ray Armstrong, Shayne Skov, and Wynton McManis signed beyond this past season. Gerald Hodges, Michael Wilhoite, and Nick Bellore are the two most notable free agents from the group. The 49ers extended Armstrong late this season, but even still, there is a need for long-term stability. I don’t know that the 49ers will spend that No. 2 pick on Reuben Foster, but if they do not, maybe they look ILB in the second round or later.