The San Francisco 49ers continue to their homework on the three QB prospects who are projected to be available at No. 3.
General manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan will see Justin Fields throw in person on Wednesday, and the duo is planning on attending Trey Lance’s second pro day on April 19.
Some NFL Draft pundits have the Niners zeroing in on Alabama’s Mac Jones, but the Niners have plenty of time to make their decision. The 2021 NFL Draft is scheduled to begin on April 29 and it looks like Lynch and Shanahan will use every second at their disposal to make sure they get the selection right.
Here is who some of the major media outlets have San Francisco taking in their latest mock drafts.
NFL.com has the 49ers taking Mac Jones
The 49ers made a decisive trade to get to No. 3 overall. I honestly do not think they’ve made a decision on who the QB will be yet, but they wanted the flexibility to make that choice over the next few weeks. I will tell you this: Mac Jones’ name didn’t pop up out of nowhere. And I don’t think it’s a smoke screen. He has all of the traits Kyle Shanahan is looking for. - Peter Schrager
Pro Football Focus has the 49ers taking Jones
It won’t take long for the 2021 NFL Draft to get interesting. Reports from several of the league’s most plugged-in reporters and analysts, like Adam Schefter, Daniel Jeremiah and Dane Brugle, suggest that Mac Jones is going to be the selection here for the San Francisco 49ers.
Although I personally don’t agree with the selection — Justin Fields would be the better option — Jones still projects to fit well in the Shanahan offense. He’s extremely accurate, a great decision-maker and moves well within the pocket.
Jones’ adjusted completion percentage (84.2%) and PFF passing grade (94.8) last season ranked first and second in the nation, respectively. Both were superior to Joe Burrow’s numbers from the season prior.
I understand the tension around Jones as the No. 3 pick, especially considering what the 49ers paid to move up. But few would be questioning the decision if the team honed in on Justin Fields or Trey Lance at No. 3. Quarterback is the move here; we just have to wait and see which one the 49ers have in their sights. - Andrew Erickson
CBS Sports has the 49ers taking Zach Wilson
The 49ers pounce on the chance to select Wilson, who backed up his stellar final season at BYU with an equally impressive pro day. Unlike the quarterbacks picked ahead of him, Wilson may get the chance to sit and watch as a rookie assuming the 49ers don’t trade Jimmy Garoppolo. - Bryan DeArdo
USA TODAY has the 49ers taking Justin Fields
The real mystery of the draft begins here, as it’s anyone’s guess as to whether coach Kyle Shanahan and GM John Lynch favor Fields, Alabama’s Mac Jones or North Dakota State’s Trey Lance. For as much buzz as there has been around Jones for this spot, Fields still sizes up as the best and most reasonable option. Armed with pinpoint accuracy and an aggressive-but-calculated mindset, he can unlock new dimensions for Shanahan while still playing under control. - Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz
Pro Football Network has the 49ers taking Trey Lance
This selection is the most anticipated in the entire 2021 NFL Draft. Some believe that Kyle Shanahan wants Justin Fields due to their connection through the QB Collective (Shanahan’s QB development program). Others think it could be Mac Jones, thanks to some national media member’s calling their shot early. I, however, subscribe to a different theory.
Kyle Shanahan grew up in the business of football; he knows the value of information. After dealing with a physically average and limited quarterback in Jimmy Garoppolo, he moves into the top three to swing for the fences. Trey Lance lands in San Francisco, Garoppolo plays one more season in San Francisco, and Lance takes over after this year. In my eyes, Lance has the best tools in the class. Kyle Shanahan is salivating at the opportunity to mold this limitless ball of clay in his vision. - Matthew Valdovino
Before the 49ers made the trade up to No. 3, I thought corner was the most likely position to target at No. 12. And they can still get a good one in Round 2. Campbell played a lot of press coverage for the Bulldogs, and he was inconsistent, but I’d bet on his upside. San Francisco let both Ahkello Witherspoon and Richard Sherman walk in free agency.
As you can see, draft pundits are all over the place with four different QBs going to the Niners in their mock drafts. The 49ers’ decision will simply come down to which signal-caller Shanahan believes he can succeed with the most.
San Francisco will do its homework on Jones, Fields, Lance and Wilson over the coming weeks and will likely begin to zero in on their target in the days leading up to the draft. It remains anyones guess what the 49ers will do, but all eyes are on the organization leading up to April 29.