The San Francisco 49ers will hold one of the top handful of picks in the 2018 NFL Draft, and with so many quarterbacks projected in the first round, they could find themselves in a strong position to trade down for a haul of picks. That will depend, of course, on the value attached to these quarterbacks.
General manager John Lynch does not strike me as one to BS anybody on his opinions, but in an appearance on the Guy Haberman and John Middlekauff podcast earlier this week, his comments about quarterback Baker Mayfield raised some eyebrows.
“Yea, he’s got some special qualities to him. He reminds a lot of people of [Johnny] Manziel, kinda has some of those qualities, but he’s a good football player … I see a little [Brett] Favre in him. Favre just seems like a guy, the passion he played the game with, you know, and so, you always get yourself in trouble when you say, I see a lot of Favre in him. No, he’s not Brett Favre yet, but the guy loves the game of football, people seem to gravitate towards him, and so he’s got that special skillset, both the tangible things he can do — he throws the football extremely well, he can move around — but he can also, there’s something special about that kind, you can see it.”
Eric Branch probably summed it up best with this tweet.
Lynch presumably being sincere, but I'm still labeling this the start of his Talk-College-QBs-Up-And-Trade-Down strategy. #blewthedoorsoff https://t.co/hD4rQofqyR— Eric Branch (@Eric_Branch) November 15, 2017
On a side note, Branch’s tweets on the past two game days about Jimmy Garoppolo have been hysterical.
Lynch was not saying Baker Mayfield is the next Brett Favre, but he was asked for a comparison, and so he offered it. And given his Johnny Manziel mention, it is not surprising he would mention Favre. While Manziel washed out of the NFL, his “gunslinger” skillset did result in comparisons to Favre.
The 49ers’ acquisition of Jimmy Garoppolo likely means they will not be spending their first pick in the draft on a quarterback. It gives them a chance to go in a lot of directions near the top of the draft. There are some intriguing defensive players, and some potentially valuable offensive skill position players. But if they can find one team who desperately wants a quarterback, they could really be in the driver’s seat next April.