The NFL has wrapped up one week of free agency, and the San Francisco 49ers were plenty busy. They signed 3 players before free agency, 11 since the start of free agency, traded for center Jeremy Zuttah, and re-signed wide receiver Jeremy Kerley and defensive tackle Chris Jones.
On Wednesday, prior to the 49ers trading for Zuttah, NFL.com posted the 2017 NFL Draft order with updated team needs. For the 49ers, they included quarterback, outside linebacker, and offensive line as the top needs. They had this to say about the 49ers current status.
So how do you shop for a team with needs across the board? Start with finding a QB to build around. The 49ers have to get better at guard and might need to start looking for another right tackle. Improving the pass rush off the edge could be a Round 1 focus.
They listed outside linebacker, but given the 49ers switch to a 4-3 and their own analysis of the situation, they likely mean someone to fit the Leo position. Ahmad Brooks is likely going to play the SAM outside linebacker role, but the team has questions about the edge option. Aaron Lynch, Eli Harold, and Tank Carradine will compete for the role, but the team is likely to add more help in the draft.
The team added center Jeremy Zuttah on Wednesday, which is a big step in addressing the offensive line needs. They still need more competition for the group, most specifically a swing tackle. Zane Beadles could remain in that role, but ideally they upgrade the line.
Other than QB, edge, and OL, what other needs do you see at this point? The team has a bunch of tight ends, but it’s hard to get too excited about the group. The team added serious depth at wide receiver, but a true No. 1 remains necessary for the long term.
On the defensive side of the ball, the linebacker position could always use more depth, and a free safety could be a very real option, depending on their assessment of Jimmie Ward. They need depth across the board, but in terms of immediate needs, I would limit it to them.
Here’s the full roster following the trade for Jeremy Zuttah and the re-signing of Chris Jones.
QB: Brian Hoyer, Matt Barkley
RB: Carlos Hyde, Mike Davis, Raheem Mostert
FB: Kyle Juszczyk
WR: Pierre Garcon, Marquise Goodwin, Jeremy Kerley, Aaron Burbridge, DeAndre Carter, Bruce Ellington, Chris Harper, Eric Rogers, Rasahad Ross, DeAndre Smelter, Aldrick Robinson
TE: Logan Paulsen, Vance McDonald, Garrett Celek, Blake Bell, Je’Ron Hamm
OT: Joe Staley, Trent Brown, Norman Price, John Theus
OG: Zane Beadles, Joshua Garnett
C: Jeremy Zuttah, Daniel Kilgore, Alex Balducci
DL: Arik Armstead, Ronald Blair, DeForest Buckner, Zach Moore, Quinton Dial, Earl Mitchell, Mike Purcell, Chris Jones
LB: Malcolm Smith, Ray-Ray Armstrong, NaVorro Bowman, Carl Bradford, Ahmad Brooks, Tank Carradine, Eli Harold, Aaron Lynch, Wynton McManis, Shayne Skov, Brock Coyle
CB: Jimmie Ward, Tramaine Brock, Rashard Robinson, K’Waun Williams, Keith Reaser, Will Redmond, Dontae Johnson, Prince Charles Iworah, JaCorey Shepherd, Don Jones
S: Eric Reid, Jaquiski Tartt, Marcus Ball, Vinnie Sunseri
K: Robbie Gould, Nick Rose
P: Bradley Pinion, Brock Miller
LS: Kyle Nelson