More and more analysts are coming around to Justin Fields to San Francisco at No. 3. Fox Sports Joe Klatt —who called ten games of Fields at Ohio State — was the latest, as he said the 49ers should select Fields for several reasons. The chief reason Klatt listed was how he led all Power 5 quarterbacks in the past two years in air yards.
Klatt had some excellent points that are obvious to me but not to most. For example, when people mention Fields’ bad games, it’s evident that he’s pressing and simply trying to do too much.
Patrick Mahomes was the same way at Texas Tech. He tried to overcompensate and do too much. That was never the way he wanted to play, but Mahomes was labeled as reckless because of it. In Fields’ case, he wanted to win the Heisman and do so on every play, even when it’s not there. That’s an easy fix but a great mindset to have.
Klatt also spoke about how it’s impossible to be a one-read quarterback when you’re throwing the ball down the field. You have to read multiple defenders and change trajectory on your throws. Fields fit the ball into tight spaces repeatedly. Almost equally as necessary, he’s willing to do so at the college level. That’s why coaches like Kyle Shanahan are salivating at Fields’ game.
Former Niners cornerback Richard Sherman doubled down on his original stance that the 49ers are taking Fields:
“I don’t know what they’re thinking. I don’t think Kyle and John ever show their hand. I’ve never seen speculation to the point that it is right now. This is a feverous pitch of speculation. This is ridiculous.
And then it’s almost like a smokescreen because every mock has Mac Jones. It’s like, c’mon now. It’s interesting. It’s gonna be interesting, and San Francisco’s gonna pretty much control the draft and control what everybody else does.”
The mock drafts with Mac Jones at No. 3 haven’t changed, even this week. From ESPN’s Mel Kiper to The Athletic’s Dane Brugler. For the draft capital, the team gave up, and considering who is on the board; I can’t imagine the Niners passing up on a Fields or Trey Lance.
From a football point of view, it doesn’t add up. This is why it felt like a smokescreen from the jump, and that fire is nearly extinguished.
Sherman is correct when he says San Francisco is in control of the draft. If it’s Fields or Lance, some team is likely coming up to No. 4 to select the other quarterback. Who that team is would depend on the available QB.
Sherman didn’t read much into the 49ers’ brass showing up to Alabama’s pro day. He said the team could be scouting for next year since the talent at Alabama is so immense that you simply don’t miss those pro days. He added that San Francisco would go to all three pro days.
At this point, who do you believe the quarterback the team is selecting at No. 3?