The Trey Lance trade is officially in the books. Ahead of the 2021 NFL Draft, the 49ers moved up from No. 12 overall to No. 3, in exchange for multiple draft picks. Here’s a look at how those picks turned out.
2021 - No. 12 overall - Micah Parsons
Once Parsons started playing on the line of scrimmage, he quickly became one of the most dominant defenders in the NFL.
In two seasons, Parsons has 29 tacks, 31 quarterback hits, and 100 run stops. Fans often fantasize about a Parsons and Nick Bosa pairing, but just because that player was on the board doesn’t mean the 49ers would have taken him.
Remember, Dallas drafted Parsons to play linebacker and the only reason he moved down to an edge rusher was due to multiple injuries. Parsons is an incredible football player, but I doubt he would have ended up in the Bay Area had the Niners stayed put at No. 12.
The 49ers weren’t leaving this draft without a quarterback. If they stayed put, perhaps they’d move up a couple of spots to select Justin Fields or Mac Jones. By the looks of it, Trevor Lawrence is the only quarterback to go in the first round in 2021 with a promising future. Every other quarterback has question marks to some degree.
2022 - No. 29 overall - Cole Strange
The Patriots through everyone for a surprise, specifically the Rams brass:
Rams reaction to Patriots selection of Cole Strange at #29.— Andrew Siciliano (@AndrewSiciliano) April 29, 2022
This is hysterical. pic.twitter.com/ADzqt4lizQ
Strange finished his rookie year starting in every game and finished the season allowing five sacks with a PFF grade of 54.6.
The 49ers likely would have selected a hybrid defensive back, such as Daxton Hill, or one of the available edge rushers, such as Arnold Ebiketie or Boye Mafe. Drake Jackson has a chance to be as good if not better than both players.
2022 third-round round - Channing Tindall - No. 102 overall -
Tindall played 10 snaps on defense and missed more tackles than he registered, per PFF. Most of Tindall’s work came on special teams.
In an alternate universe, it’s difficult to tell where the 49ers go, since they took Danny Gray three picks later. By the way, John Lynch spoke about potentially moving Mike McGlinchey, my guess would be the Niners would have taken offensive tackle Mike Mitchell, who wound up going to the Jets at No. 111 overall.
2023 - Bryan Bresee - No. 29 overall
I’m interested to see how Steve Wilks body types differ from DeMeco Ryans. It’d be difficult for any defensive coordinator to pass on an edge rusher who runs a 4.3, like Nolan Smith. Kyle Shanahan isn’t letting Michael Mayer pass him by. If San Francisco had their pick last night the way the board went, my guess would be Smith, Felix Anudike-Uzomah, or Mayer.