The San Francisco 49ers have been regularly connected to Stanford defensive lineman Solomon Thomas in mock drafts, but we now have a second report suggesting the 49ers might be looking in another direction.
A week ago, Bleacher Report draft analyst Matt Miller reported that he was hearing from 49ers source that the team was in love with running back Leonard Fournette and linebacker Reuben Foster. On Thursday, Albert Breer joined in with his own reporting. The MMQB columnist wrote that he has, “heard from a number of people” that the 49ers like Foster and Fournette.
• WHAT’S SAN FRANCISCO DOING? It’s the most asked question I’m hearing from teams, and Stanford pass-rusher Solomon Thomas has long appeared to be the leader in the clubhouse to go No. 2 after Cleveland takes Texas A&M freak Myles Garrett off the board. But I’d be surprised if GM John Lynch doesn’t make an effort to try and deal down and accumulate more draft capital. I’ve heard from a number of people that the Niners like Alabama LB Reuben Foster and LSU RB Leonard Fournette.
If Breer spoke with people other than those who Miller spoke with, this certainly adds some intrigue. My guess is the 49ers would like to see someone move up to draft Fournette, so they are happy to put the word out about both prospects. The Carolina Panthers are rumored to be interested in Fournette, and so they might be inclined to move up.
At the same time, if they are legitimately interested in either player, it’s not like there is much concern they could not get one of them. The Cleveland Browns are fully expected to draft Myles Garrett, and with the No. 2 pick, the 49ers will have their choice of every other player. So, talking about who you like that high is not really that big a deal.
The question of course is whether or not they actually are interested in Fournette or Foster, or if it’s a smoke-screen to get a trade done. It’s one more wrinkle to consider as we wait for these final three weeks to tick down to the 2017 NFL Draft.