As the date draws closer to the NFL draft, mock drafts will be all the rage as positional needs for teams are evident during free agency. Secondary, EDGE, and OT are positions the 49ers need to address, not only for the present but the future.
Trevor Sikkema of PFF put together a three-round draft that ends with his predictions for the 49ers at picks 99, 101, and 102.
Let’s dive into his picks:
Pick 99 - Tre’Vius Hodges-Tomlinson, CB, TCU
LaDanian Tomlinson’s nephew was a three-star recruit from Waco, Texas. Hodges-Tomlinson earned First-Team All-Big 12 and First-Team AP All-Big 12 honors in 2020 and 2021. 2020 all earned Tomlinson a Second-Team AP All-American honor.
The TCU cornerback profiles as an athletically gifted, man coverage specialist with smooth movement. Versatility is a plus for Hodges-Tomlinson, with experience outside and in the slot. Hodges-Tomlinson’s speed allows him to make up ground quickly, if he’s beat off the line.
Standing at 5-foot-9 may be an issue in the NFL. Nickel corner is more likely where he will succeed, but his man coverage skills are impressive. His speed will allow him to cover smaller, faster receivers better.
While Hodges-Tomlinson’s motor and effort can’t be denied, cleaning up his tackling will be a point of emphasis at the next level.
Pick 101 - Olusegun Oluwatimi, C, Michigan
Oluwatimi started at center for the University of Virginia before transferring to Michigan for his senior year. Starting all four years means Oluwatimi has a high football IQ and tons of experience. Standing at 6-foot-2, Oluwatimi is a good pass blocker that fits in a zone-blocking scheme.
One concern is his prowess in the run game, which is a necessary skill in Kyle Shanahan’s scheme. Jake Brendel is back on a four-year deal, but with some development, Oluwatimi can become the center of the future.
Pick 102 - Ivan Pace, Jr., LB, Cincinnati
The Cincinnati LB plays fast and has a nose for the football. His strengths are his burst and toughness. Pace, Jr, is an ideal fit to blitz from the second level.
Coverage isn’t a strength for Pace, Jr, and his size is a concern, but his speed and toughness fit with the 49ers’ defensive mindset. An excellent run defender who can disrupt plays with his play speed on blitzes.
Under Fred Warner’s guidance, this pick can pay dividends with Azeez Al-Shaair’s departure.