The Cleveland Browns hold the most assets in the first round of the 2017 NFL draft, but the San Francisco 49ers at No. 2 overall have a chance to move the draft in an assortment of directions. The Browns are all but certain to draft Myles Garrett with the No. 1 pick. After that, there is no consensus second pick, leaving the 49ers with a host of options.
USA Today NFL columnist Tom Pelissero took some time earlier this week to chat with KNBR about the 49ers and the No. 2 pick. As one would expect, he is not sure what direction will be going. He said that in speaking with executives from ten different teams this week, he’s gotten ten different answers.
Pelissero thinks Jamal Adams is the second best guy on the draft board, but that certainly doesn’t mean he is No. 2 on every draft board. In reality, we could see a whole host of possibilities with that pick. And if ten executives gave ten different names, that group could include Adams, Solomon Thomas, Malik Hooker, Marshon Lattimore, Jonathan Allen, Reuben Foster, Leonard Fournette, Mitchell Trubisky, and maybe some group like O.J. Howard, Derek Barnett, and/or Christian McCaffrey.
Here’s what Pelissero had to say (audio). Who else might be in the mix among the numerous answers he got from executives?
“You know I’ve asked that question to people from, executives from 10 teams in the past couple of days and I’ve gotten 10 different answers. I think that if you’re looking for who is the consensus second best player in the draft, and that’s presuming that Myles Garrett, despite recent speculation goes number one to the Browns or somebody else, which I still think is very likely — the number two guy is probably Jamal Adams, the safety from LSU. I think if you look at him and his background, he’s a clean prospect in terms of when people are asking around the school about him, he’s known as a really good leader. If you’re thinking culturally the things that John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan have talked about, he’d make a lot of sense ...
“I’ve had people, certainly there’s been a lot of speculation about Solomon Thomas from Stanford. I’ve had people tell me that’s definitely the pick, I’ve had people tell me there’s no chance that’s the pick. He’s a guy who played out of position last year, he’s kind of undersized for a 3-technique. You gotta figure out what his home is going to be in the defense. I totally think that’s a possibility — and the other thing, I talked to somebody who knows Kyle really well, and his personality, and he thinks one way or another, whether it involves a trade down or not, that they’re going to come away with offense.
“The problem is, in this draft in particular, what I think makes this draft unusual up at the top, in the top five especially, is the fact that if you’re talking about core positions, you’re starting out at quarterback, left tackle, wide receiver in the draft, a lot of times those guys get pushed up — and really in this draft there’s not any of those guys who I think is a definite top five pick. That means that you’re probably going to see a lot of defense up at the top, and there’s a certain level of unpredictability that in turn may lead to teams leaning toward what they need as opposed to best player available, because that’s more subjective.”