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Ahkello Witherspoon grades out well in PFF run through of third round picks

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The 49ers got some solid talent in the third round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

The San Francisco 49ers had a busy third round in last year’s NFL Draft, and out of it came a pair of solid picks. They secured a starting cornerback in Ahkello Witherspoon, and a potentially capable backup quarterback in C.J. Beathard.

Pro Football Focus is doing a lot of data visualization work, and so they took all 43 third round picks and posted them with their respective overall grade. You can view that below.

Witherspoon ended up fifth in the round for overall PFF grade. There are a lot of players who did not qualify for grading, and of course, there was a sizable variation in snaps between a lot of players. But given what we saw of Witherspoon, we could tell he was a solid cornerback.

The 49ers will be adding more cornerback talent this offseason, but it seems a safe bet that we see Witherspoon starting this fall. K’Waun Williams will likely be starting in the nickel role, leaving a spot open opposite Witherspoon on the outside. Dontae Johnson had that role this season, but was benched late in the year, and likely will depart in free agency. The 49ers could end up using the No. 9/10 pick on the position, or could invest heavily in free agency.

C.J. Beathard did not finish with a great grade, but all things considered, I don’t really see reason to be disappointed in his performance. Some will argue the pick itself could have been used on a more valuable player. And yet, given the importance of the quarterback position, finding a young quarterback to groom has plenty of value. A lot of people were surprised by the pick, but given the lack of talent, Beathard looked relatively decent at times.

Jimmy Garoppolo’s emergence showed the difference in talent between the two, along with the difference in spending nearly four years learning from a Hall of Fame quarterback. However, as of this moment, it’s hard not to be satisfied with the 49ers quarterback room heading into 2018.