The San Francisco 49ers need help in the trenches on both sides of the ball. They need interior help on the offensive line, and edge help on the defensive line. Daniel Jeremiah and Bucky Brooks put together a mock draft specific to the 49ers, and they addressed both sides of the trenches in serious fashion.
You can watch most of the video above, and then the first and last few seconds here. Here’s a look at the picks and what Jeremiah and Brooks had to say about them. Each pick is followed with a few of my own thoughts on fit.
1 (9). Marcus Davenport, DE, UTSA
Jeremiah: “They go get a big-time edge rusher in Marcus Davenport from UTSA. This is a player they’ve spent a lot of time on, studying him, sending their position coach to his pro day to work him out, Buck. A lot of buzz building he could be in play here in the top 10 for the Niners.”
Brooks: “He’d be a great pick, a great fit as a guy who is really comfortable rushing from an upright stance and he has the athleticism to burst the bend to be able to get home. You add a 10+ sack artist to that defense, they should be able to get back into the mix.”
Bradley Chubb has gotten a lot of love, and is expected to be gone before the 49ers pick. Harold Landry is viewed as a potential pick at No. 9. However, Davenport could be the more intriguing higher ceiling player. The 49ers badly need help at edge rusher, and spending the ninth pick on the position would not be surprising. I don’t “expect” anything with the pick, but edge rusher is high on my list of most likely uses of the first round pick.
2 (59). Austin Corbett, OG, Nevada
Brooks: “When I look at this player on tape, I like the athleticism, I like the way he’s steadily improved. I think he’s going to do a good job inside as an interior blocker, and if you’re the 49ers, you know you’re making change. You bring Jonathan Cooper over, you’re gonna have Austin Corbett. Now, you’re a little more athletic to execute the kind of running game that you want to.”
The 49ers have Laken Tomlinson, Jonathan Cooper, Joshua Garnett, and Erik Magnuson competing for the two guard positions. There are zero guarantees in that group, and a guard in the first two days of the draft makes sense. Corbett could play both guard and center, giving him important versatility.
3 (70). Holton Hill, CB, Texas
Jeremiah: “I don’t know if he’s gonna start right away, but how about Holton Hill from Texas? Plug him in the mix, get another young, tall, long, athletic corner that’s a perfect scheme fit here for the Niners.”
Brooks: “Perfect scheme fit. He looks like a Richard Sherman clone in terms of long arms, can get on the edge, can press, can bail out. I was very impressed with how he played at Texas, particularly I think he has the versatility and length to be a really good player in that scheme.”
Hill brings tremendous size, standing 6’3, 200 pounds. However, he was suspended late in 2017 for violating team rules, and there is some speculation he would have been ineligible for 2018. The physical tools are there, but do the 49ers see a player with the kind of “football character” we hear about so much? If they’re at all interested, I would think they would spend a lot of time getting to know him, with a visit for a workout and potentially bringing him in to Santa Clara for an official visit.
3 (74). Da’Shawn Hand, DE, Alabama
Jeremiah: “I think you always want a little bit more, because of the athletic ability, you want a little bit more production, but the skillset is there. I think he’ll be a better pro even than he was at the University of Alabama.”
Hand seems like a guy who could rotate outside in place of Tank Carradine at the right defensive end spot, and get some work inside on passing downs. However, Solomon Thomas would seem to be the guy the 49ers are targeting for that kind of role.