The San Francisco 49ers will have a top 10 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, with a list of needs that includes cornerback, left guard and edge rusher above all else. Over the past week or two, I’ve taken a quick look into the needs of the teams that will be picking higher in the draft, and how they could overlap with San Francisco.
For starters, it really helps that the 49ers landed Jimmy Garoppolo and don’t need a quarterback, a need that could conceivably be addressed by three to four teams picking ahead of San Francisco, and that’s before trades.
On the other side, plenty of the teams picking ahead of the 49ers have needs that lineup with San Francisco. Cornerback is a popular pick, and while many of the teams could use an offensive tackle before a guard, there are plenty of needs along the interior as well.
Plus fringe 49ers needs, like running back and outside linebacker, pop up as well.
Below you can find links to the writeups, but I’ll give you the bare bones before those.
Cleveland Browns: QB, CB, RB, OT, OLB, WR
New York Giants: OT, OG, QB, RB, OLB, CB
Indianapolis Colts: OT, OG, Edge, RB, ILB
Denver Broncos: QB, OG, OT, WR, ILB
New York Jets: QB, Edge, OT, LB, RB
Chicago Bears: WR, CB, RT, DE
Oakland Raiders: CB, OT, WR, ILB, DT
Keep in mind that the Browns pick twice ahead of the 49ers, and their large need at cornerback lines up with the 49ers along with minor San Francisco needs at running back, outside linebacker and wide receiver.
There are four teams on that list I’ve marked as needing a cornerback, and I think three of them (but again, Browns pick twice, so four chances) would consider using a first-round pick in this year’s class. The Giants’ needs depends a lot on the Eli Apple situation, but even if that self-destructs further, my guess is they won’t pick a corner there.
Similarly, I could see any of the three teams that need a guard spending a first-round pick on them. The top few guards in this year’s class are definitely worth first-round picks, and the needs are great enough on the Giants, Colts and Broncos to warrant such a selection.
If you tend to think Carlos Hyde won’t be back, then you might consider running back a very serious need, and I have four of the teams ahead of the 49ers — including the dual-picking Browns — who have a significant need at running back. With Saquon Barkley on the table, that’s bad news for those of you who want him coming to San Francisco.
Either way, it sure would suck for two or more cornerbacks to go off the board before the 49ers get around to picking.