*************2016 NFL DRAFT GRADES************

1.7 DeForest Buckner, DE/DT, Oregon

I don't love the Buckner fit for this team (which is sad since he played in the 3-4 in college), but I just don't see the upside in him when he is set as a 34 DE. He does have great potential though and his value was there.


1.28 Joshua Garnett, OG, Stanford

Huh? First of all I don't often condone trading up to take a guard, especially when it is in the 1st round, he costs three draft picks, and he isn't even the best guard available. The 49ers are not a good enough team to be making those kinds of moves. 


3.Will Redmond, CB, Mississippi State

No argument there. Redmond adds a good spice to the team, fills a need, and was a good value.



So the team got three starters which helps, but I am not sold that they got the three best. But the 49ers went into the draft wanting certain guys regardless of their value, and it hurts them a little.

*************2015 NFL DRAFT GRADES************

1.17 Arik Armstead, DE/DT, Oregon

Armstead is a monster that fits the 49ers defense perfectly. Unfortunately he is a freak that will have to be dialed in carefully before he becomes a talent. This marriage between player and team was way too obvious though, and I feel like there were a few better impacts out there. Regardless they got the guy they wanted while picking up two day-3 picks to fall back a little bit.


2.46 Jaquiski Tartt, S, Samford

He helps add some good depth and could be a steal, but it is a little early for him and there were other guys.


3.79 Eli Harrold, DE/LB, Virginia

I don't know how he fell this far, but great pick. If they had taken him in the 1st I wouldn't have hated it.


4.117 Blake Bell, TE, Oklahoma

4.126 Mike Davis, RB, South Carolina

4.132 DeAndre Smelter, WR, Georgia Tech

5.165 Bradley Pinion, P, Clemson

6.140 Ian Silberman, OG, BC

7.244 Trenton Brown, OG, Florida

7.254 Busta Anderson, TE, South Carolina


I don't love a lot of the picks that they made, but they did reload their empty defensive with three possible starters, and then got some depth later. 

*************2014 NFL DRAFT GRADES************

1.30 Jimmie Ward, S, NIU

This pick seemed very forced. Three other safeties went, and the 49ers wanted a safety here no matter what. Ward is a good talent, but has some injury history, and will be playing out of position a little bit. He might even have to play corner.


2.57 Carlos Hyde, RB, Ohio State

Another pick that seemed a little forced. Teams started a run on rushers, and so the 49ers had to get one. With that said, I don't hate it. Frank Gore is wearing out, and you cannot assume that Marcus Lattimore will be ready (or good) next year.


3.70 Marcus Martin, OC, USC

Good pick. Martin is a great value here, and should be able to contribute on the team for awhile.


3.77 Chris Borland, LB, Wisconsin

Borland fell to where he should have gone, and he should be able to contribute. I don't see pro bowler, but a hard hitting and smart player is perfect for the team. At worst you have an elite special teamer.


3.100 Brandon Thomas, OG, Clemson

I think after his injury this is still a tad early for him, but the 49ers are getting a PUP list/IR guy that could be an elite player in 2015.

4.106 Bruce Ellington, WR, South Carolina

Awesome value. Best player on the board, and fills a huge need.

4.129 Dontae Johnson, CB, NC State

5.150 Aaron Lynch, DE/LB, USF

5.170 Keith Reaser, CB, FAU

6.180 Kenneth Acker, CB, SMU

7.243 Kaleb Ramsey, DT, BC

7.245 Trey Millard, FB, Oklahoma


Phew. 12 picks from the 49ers. I like this draft because they walked away with five guys that will contribute next year, and up to seven starters from the bunch in the future. They hit some needs, added good depth, and got good value on a lot of the guys.

*************2013 NFL DRAFT GRADES************

1.18 Eric Reid, S, LSU

I don't love the pick, but they only gave up a 3rd rounder to move up and get a guy that they love. It is a pick that fills a need too.


2.40 Tank Carradine, DE/DT/LB, FSU

I'm not quite sure where they will put Carradine, but I love the value here. He should have been a first round pick, and he is a great value here.


2.55 Vance McDonald, TE, Rice

I was high on McDonald as a sleeper... not as a 2nd rounder. Great pick, but they didn't have to move up to get him.


3.88 Corey Lemonier, DE/LB Auburn

This is a good value on Lemonier who could have gone in the middle of the 2nd round. Sure the team might be loading up on pass rushers, but last I checked it was a luxury that many great teams follow. I hope that they bolster their defensive backs a little more though.

4.128 Quinton Patton, WR, LA Tech

It was just stupid that Patton was still there for them.

4.131 Marcus Lattimore, RB, South Carolina

I'm glad the kid got drafted. With that said, he was a fair value here given his potential v injury risk.

5.157 Quinton Dial, DE/DT, Alabama

6.180 Nick Moody, LB, FSU

7.237 B.J. Daniels, QB, USF

7.246 Carter Bykowski, OT, Iowa State

7.252 Marcus Cooper, CB, Rutgers


I don't hate this draft like I hate the Seahawks draft, because this one had some good value guys that will play. I see one stater and four other guys that will get good playing time. I do wish that they could have parlayed some of the picks into better value, but it was an ok draft.

 *************2012 NFL DRAFT GRADES************ 

1:30 AJ Jenkins, WR, Illinois

Wow. The 49ers could have taken about 40 other guys and gotten a better value with the pick. Hell, there may be 10 other receivers better than Jenkins (who was a late 2nd rounder at best). The team gave Alex Smith a threat to compete for a starting spot with Crabtree, Moss and Manningham, and at best he will be receiving wicked 13 yard deep bombs from Alex F***ING smith.


2: 61 LaMichael James, RB, Oregon

I absolutely nailed this one and have had LaMichael going there for 3 months now. As I said in my mock "Harbaugh's last collegiate loss was to Oregon in 2012 when LaMichael James ran 257 yards and three scores. He is the perfect change of pace for the team."

4.117 Joe Looney, OG, Wake Forest

I like that the team got some guard help, but they reached a bit for Looney here when other guys were out there.

5.165: Darius Fleming, DE/LB, Notre Dame

6.180 Trent Robinson, S, Michigan State

6.199 Jason Slowey, C, Western Oregon

7.237 Cam Johnson, DE/DT/LB, Virginia

I'm not sold that Johnson is a perfect fit for the team, but they got a guy that very well could have gone in the 3rd or 4th according to talent.



One thing I liked about the 49ers draft was that they moved around and ended up with a 3rd and a 5th rounder in 2013. With that said, I don't love the draft outside of the LaMichael James pick. I don't care how many OLmen, runners and receivers you add for Alex Smith, because at the end of the day he won't know what to do with it all. He has Randy Moss in his crew which is great, but do we really want to see him throw a deep 14-yard checkdown to Moss and AJ Jenkins. 

The team reached on value, and got maybe a single starter from the draft.

*************2011 NFL DRAFT GRADES************ 

1.7 Aldon Smith, DE/LB, Missouri

The team needed a new pass rusher and Smith was very high on some teams boards. It was also obvious that Robert Quinn, Blaine Gabbert and Prince Amukumara were overrated a little bit by the major media sources.


2.36 Colin Kaepernick, QB, Nevada

I personally didn't believe that Kaepernick was a top-40 pick, but the team needed a quarterback, and got a very good project. The team also only spend a 2nd round pick for him so he doesn't have to be the 'face of the franchise' like Locker, Ponder, Gabbert and Newton.


3.80 Chris Culliver, CB, South Carolina

Culliver was a 5th rounder by most reports, so this is a reach, but the team has needed a corner for awhile.


4.115 Kendall Hunter, RB, Oklahoma State

It seems like every year the team drafts a guy to support Frank Gore, and every year I am happy for the pick.


5.163 Daniel Kilgore, OG, Appalachian State

It is hard to criticize a team for adding offensive OL depth late in a draft, but it could have been a better value.


6.182 Ronald Johnson, WR, USC

The team needed some weapons on offense and getting someone that I thought could go in round 4 here is a good value.


6.190 Colin Jones, S, TCU

I think the team could have found a pure safety a little bit earlier, and I think there were other talents out there, but an ok pick nonetheless. 


7.211 Bruce Miller, DE/LB, UCF

Miller is too small to play in the NFL. He was also too small to play in college, and did nothing but prove people wrong. I love prospects like this, and I hope he becomes a star.


7.239 Mike Person, OT, Montana State

Very late draft offensive line depth is something to love.


7.250 Curtis Holcomb, CB, FAMU

Last year the 49ers signed UDFA LeRoy Vann (although I believe he was later released) from FAMU, and the team might really like what they are seeing from the program.


Draft Grade: B

Overall I really like that the team touched on high potential guys that also fit team needs. I'm not sure that any of their picks will end up as starters in 2011, but if the team thinks that it is a year from competing that this is a top notch draft.


The team addressed a couple of their biggest needs, but did they really get better? The team picked a QB in the 2nd round, but was it a way for them to touch on it without committing to a 1st round guy? Could Colin Kaepernick be the next Jimmy Clausen? Who knows. The team added a few pieces, but I still am not sold that they found a starter for 2011.