The divisional playoff round is over, meaning that we have a new round of mock drafts. Let’s go over a few to see which ones we like the best.
PFF’s Seth Galina has Zach Wilson falling to the San Francisco 49ers at No. 12 in their latest mock:
Well, well, well … if it isn’t the 49ers finding their quarterback of the future after Kyle Shanahan continued to speak in unbelievably vague terms about Jimmy Garoppolo.
The Niners could easily trade up for a quarterback, but they’d be ecstatic if Wilson falls to them. The BYU product played in the same wide-zone offense that Shanahan runs, so he would fit in. The question is whether his success in that offense in 2020 was due to how that offense operates. It’s one thing to become Jared Goff, Jimmy Garropolo, Kirk Cousins, Matt Schaub and the likes when you get to the NFL, but you better not have already been one of those guys in college.
I asked Seth to expound on his take a little bit, and he is a fan of Wilson. What Seth’s trying to say regarding the quarterbacks mentioned is that Shanahan’s offense and BYU’s, to a lesser degree, make average quarterbacks look good. His only worries with Wilson is that he’s a product of BYU’s offense and how Wilson wasn’t very good in the two seasons prior.
All of those are fair critiques, and the jump in competition for Wilson will be steep. Wilson’s last four defenses he played were Central Florida, San Diego State, Coastal Carolina, and North Alabama. The 49ers' first four games could look like this: Rams, Colts, Bears, Vikings. If you have concerns about how Wilson would adjust to the NFL, you are not alone.
Speaking with Seth, I asked him to explain why Wilson would be an upgrade over Jimmy Garoppolo. Without hesitation, he said arm strength. “It’s sooo much better than Jimmy’s.” That’s not news, as most of us have seen the two quarterbacks throw and can see the difference in zip on their throws.
I’m a big fan of Wilson and think he’d thrive in Shanahan’s offense. Seth points out fair concerns. Another concern would be Wilson’s size. I’m not convinced that he’s bigger than any of the team’s running backs, so 205 pounds. Jimmy is 225 pounds. He can take hits. In the NFL, you’re going to take hits. Can Wilson hold up — Especially if he’s going to hold the ball and use his athleticism? Those are questions the team will ask to determine whether Wilson is a franchise QB.