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2017 NFL mock draft: 4 rounds loading up on offensive talent

The 49ers have needs on both sides of the ball. Would it make sense to go heavy on offense when this is viewed as a strong defensive draft?

The San Francisco 49ers have decisions to make as far as how they want to focus on roster development in the 2017 NFL Draft. Free agency will be important for supplementing the talent, but this rebuilding project needs to hit big in the draft. The question is, do you invest heavily on one side or the other, or do you look for more balance?

In his latest mock draft, NFL Media draft analyst Chad Reuter decided to focus on offense. Reuter put together a four round 2017 NFL mock draft, and he has the 49ers drafting a quarterback in the first round and two wide receivers in the second and fourth rounds, and adds a pass rusher in the third round.

Reuter goes with quarterback Mitch Trubisky in the first round. It is par for the course lately, and we’ll be discussing this kind of pick until April. So, we can move on. In the second and fourth rounds, Reuter has the 49ers drafting Ohio State running back/wide receiver Curtis Samuel and Louisiana Tech wide receiver Carlos Henderson.

The 49ers need playmakers on offense, and Samuel and Henderson are two players that offer that kind of ability. Of course, both have questions that need to be answered. Samuel played more of an h-back role at Ohio State, but at 5’11, 197 pounds, he might not have the size for that kind of role in the NFL. Henderson played three years at Louisiana Tech, but it was not until this past year that he really blew up, finishing with 82 receptions for 1,535 yards and 19 touchdowns. He stands 6’1, 191 pounds, and is described as more of a receiver who excels in short catch-and-go work and nine routes. He is someone who could immediately compete for work as a returner.

In the third round, Reuter offered the one defensive pick in Alabama pass rusher Tim Williams. He is listed at 6’4, 252 pounds, but some scouts apparently think he is lighter than his listed weight. The Combine will be big for figuring out where exactly he stands. The 49ers have generally used bigger passer rushers, but we are seeing plenty of changes. They will use plenty of nickel, so if Williams does come in light, there might be questions about his ability as a hand in the ground edge rusher in the NFL.