I like our first round draft picks. I was a little suprised and still a little confused on why we moved up a slot ahead of Miami who had/has no interest in taking an OT and giving up a 4th rd pick to do so, but I think Baalke and company had some info that another team was looking to move up for Anthony Davis and obviously Denver was looking to move down. I hate to lose a 4th rd pick but if the 49ers think Anthony Davis can be as good as some do and they think he is their future starting LT, the move was well worth it. At 17, I was hoping we could move down and get a 3rd rd pick or I was hoping we would take Kyle Wilson, Maurkice Pouncey or Mike Iupati. Obviously we took Iupati who the Steelers were going to take at 18. So basically we just added some serious talent and 660pds to our offensive and I think our left side is set for the next 6-10 years. We know offensive line has been a weakness on this team for a while now and we needed to fix it and getting Mike Solari as O-Line coach and Ray Brown was a nice start and now we got some real talent on the offensive line. I think Staley will eventually move back to RT and Iupati will replace Baas at LG, giving us a big, talented left side with Davis and Iupati. My only question is how much will Davis and Iupati help us as rookies? Does Davis start of at RT? Are they going to have Iupati compete with Baas for the starting LG job? I think we will get some answers later tonight, tomorrow and after the draft. Okay, let's break down our two first round picks...
Anthony Davis: A BIG TIME Talent! I said it before, Anthony Davis is the most talented offensive tackle in a very talented offensive tackle class. He was the top rated offensive lineman coming out of High School and was recruited by everyone, USC, Ohio State, Florida, Miami, they all wanted him very badly but he was the first big time recruit coming out of New Jersey who stayed in state and signed with Rutgers. Came in as an 18 year old true freshman and started the last 8 games at right guard. Started 12 games at left tackle as a true sophomore in 2008 and another 12 at LT in 2009. Now he did report overweight every season at Rutgers starting with his freshmen season and was suspended for a game last year for being late to a team meeting. He was also overweight for the combine, so yes he has some flaws but he is only 20yrs old and he really does not have many weaknesses in his game. Go watch the game vs Pitt this past year; He dominated Pittsburgh DE Greg Romeus who is projected as a top 5 pick for the 2011 draft. He handled both George Selvie and Jason Pierre-Paul when USF played Rutgers. This kid when he is focused, he is a big time player. He was projected as a top 2-4 pick next year had he came back for his Senior season at Rutgers. At 6'5" 323pds he is obviously a big kid but he also has a wide frame with long arms. He can just slide and mirror defensive ends. He has good feet, esspecially for someone his size. I trust Singletary will keep this kid motivated and in shape and with Solari coaching him up along with Ray Brown, I think he is in good hands in San Francisco. I think he can come right in and compete for starting RT job and in 2011 and beyond I think he will be a big time NFL offensive tackle.
Mike Iupati: A big, nasty, physical 6'5" 332pd Samoan who helped make Idaho a relevant football program for the first time in a long time. Still a little raw as I believe he did not start playing football until the 8th grade. Started 33 games the last three seasons at Idaho and was team captain the last season. Can be flat out dominating in the running game. He just bowls over defenders with his size, power and massive hands. Could use work in pass protection and tends to do a lot of holding and his footwork can be sloppy but all that is coachable. He struggled in the Senior Bowl game but in the practices he was really solid, at times dominating. Really got the better of Penn State DT Jared Odrick in one on one drills. Still learning to play football and has a huge upside. I do think he can be a factor as a run blocker as a rookie and eventually turning into a very good all-around guard. The type of player you can run behind when you need a yard, someone we don't have.
I feel a lot better about our offensive line with Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati as 49ers. Potentially our left side could be as good as any in the NFL. The only question is where and how much will they play as rookies?