How will the 49ers use their picks in the 2018 NFL draft? We’re breaking down every selection below.
The San Francisco 49ers' 2017 season can be summed up in two phases.
They lost their first eight games under new coach Kyle Shanahan and then traded for quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.
With Garoppolo under center, San Francisco won their final five games while averaging almost 29 points per game. Garropolo finished with 1,560 passing yards with seven touchdowns and five interceptions.
After they bolstered their offensive line in Round One, the Niners traded veteran tackle Trent Brown and a fifth round pick to the Patriots before Round Two, getting a third third-round pick in return. This would appear to mitigate some of the concerns surrounding the Niners' first round pick.
How will they use their picks in the NFL draft? We’re breaking down every selection below.
Here's the full list of picks the 49ers hold in the 2018 draft, which will be updated as each selection is made.
Round 1, Pick 9 (No. 9 overall)
Mike McGlinchey, OT, Notre Dame
Andy Benoit's grade: C
Drafting McGlinchey is a bit of a head-scratcher given that the 49ers just gave left tackle Joe Staley a raise for the next two years. Right tackle is just as valuable in today’s NFL, but it’s hard to imagine the Niners not signing Trent Brown (the NFL’s largest man, and a decent athlete) to a long-term deal after this season. Do they believe the nearly 6’ 8” McGlinchey can somehow play guard? Do they believe Brown can? Or do they think Staley is slowing down, which was the belief before he turned in a stellar 2017 season? Adding to the curiosity of this pick is the fact that Kyle Shanahan’s system often makes life easier on pass rushers. It is a zone running based scheme, however, and those blocks require athleticism along the O-line.
Scouting Report: With a nice blend of length and athleticism, as well as experience on both sides of the line, McGlinchey should become a quality starter. He doesn’t overwhelm opponents and his ceiling doesn’t match Conor Williams’s, but he’s technically polished with a chance to start immediately, probably on the right side.
Round 2, Pick 12 (No. 44 overall, via Redskins): Dante Pettis, WR, Washington
Andy Benoit's grade: C+
How often does a team that lost its first nine games the previous year trade up to make a luxury pick the next year? The Niners didn’t have a glaring need at wide receiver, with possession-master Pierre Garcon, speedster Marquise Goodwin and young slot-specialist Trent Taylor all on the roster. But none of those are players you gameplan around, either. Kyle Shanahan, a masterful schemer, will try to win with a diverse array of receiving weapons.
Round 3, Pick 6 (No. 70 overall): Fred Warner, OLB, BYU
Andy Benoit's grade: B-
This might be the 49ers hedging against the uncertain Reuben Foster situation. Warner, because of his value in coverage (where many of a linebacker’s responsibilities lie these days), could be seen as a possible upgrade over ex-Seahawk Malcolm Smith. But Smith was signed just last year; cutting him in 2019 would bring more than $4 million in dead money against the cap.
Round 3, Pick 31 (No. 95 overall) [via New England]: Tarvarius Moore, S, Southern Mississippi
Andy Benoit's grade: B-
Let’s think about how Eric Reid must feel for a second. Reid, a top-third safety in the NFL, is unemployed, but today he saw a. his former teammate Jaquiski Tartt get a two-year contract extension; b. his younger brother get drafted; and c. his old team take a player at his position. Does this selection of Moore suggest that Jimmie Ward won’t be re-signed after 2018?
Round 4, Pick 28 (No. 128 overall): Kentavius Street, DE, North Carolina State
Round 5, Pick 5 (No. 142 overall): D.J. Reed, DB, Kansas State
Round 6, Pick 10 (No. 184 overall): Marcell Harris, DB, Florida
Round 7, Pick 5 (No. 223 overall): Jullian Taylor, DT, Temple
Round 7, Pick 22 (No. 240 overall): Richie James, WR, Middle Tennessee State