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Drafting a TE This Year: Why it Would Possibly Be a GREAT Move

"Were we watching the same game? Did you somehow miss Hernandez repeatedly gashing the Giants, over and over again, for a touchdown and 1st down after 1st down, or a gimpy Gronkowski making a huge catch over the middle of the field. If anything that game showed the value of having explosive tight-ends. The Giants receivers looked great against a shoddy Patriots secondary, but realistically there's not many receivers who didn't this year. Manningham made his big catch against Julian F'n Edelman for crying out loud......that really isn't saying much."

Yes, we were watching the same game. Yes, I saw how Hernandez repeatedly gashed the Giants over and over. But I saw how that didn't help NE win. You can site NE's DB's and that everyone that played NE's D looked well all you want. It still don't change the fact that NE's TE mismatch/playmakers could not match that of NY's WR mismatches.

The Giants could have used a big tight-end when their receivers were locked down on several 3 and out's. The Patriots didn't have as much trouble moving the ball down the field as they did have big whiffs from both their receivers and tight-ends. Brady was placing the ball pretty well and guys simply didn't step up to make plays, that happens, but the Giants seemed to flail around helplessly when the Patriots were moving the ball and Boley looked absolutely HELPLESS to stop Hernandez.

Has nothing to do with my central point. Boley looking "absolutely HELPLESS" meant nothing to the end result. In fact, I think it proves my point as to why the 49ers don't need to select a TE in the 1st round, especially seeing that we already have two good ones and decent one. I do agree, though, that NE had guys (the WR's) who didn't step up. And for this reason, I bet NE take a WR in the first (or spend for one in FA), even if Fleener is there for them.

To me, that game reiterated what a great advantage it is to have two very good tight-ends, as well as a top-notch defense. An explosive, big-tight end does more for this team than a slow, fat-f**k receiver like Jeffery or a guy who catches the ball using his body the way Floyd does. The 49ers have two serviceable possession receivers in Morgan and Crabtree, they don't need anymore.

Obviously, not only were we indeed watching two different games, but two different 49er seasons as well. "Serviceable"?, Good lord man, the 49ers won't win a Super Bowl or even go deeper into the playoffs with "two serviceable possession receivers" unless there is a real legit #1 WR in front of them both who commands double teams! And I disagree with you about Jeffery and Floyd (and so would most scouts). Either of those guys would be #1 on our team, in the least a big upgrade to the WR's we have on our WR depth chart. Morgan is a solid #2. Crabs would be your "serviceable" #3 in my book because "serviceable" is about all he's shown me. He needs to be at least pushed with drafted 3rd, 4th, or 5th round talent.

They need one guy who is an absolute burner and can stretch the field like crazy, that's not Floyd, Sanu and especially not Jeffery. If they could somehow get Kendall Wright, that would be a huge addition, but mostly they need a big playmaker in the middle of the field and call me crazy but I can't think of a top contender in the NFC that can shut down two top tight-ends, on the other hand, the Giants among other teams have shown they can shut down two top receivers and did so convincingly against the Packers

Did not Kyle Williams prove he can burn people down field in 2011? Kendall Wright is good, but we don't need anymore 5-11, 180 tweener types for our type of offense. We have two of them (Ginn and Williams). BTW, the Giants could stop NE's TE's but they was able to win with their wide-outs.

Playmaker is this team's BIGGEST need and I see a play-making tight-end that is far more ready to contribute right off the bat than any receiver available late in the 1st round. Points on the board are what count, put 2 top tight-ends on the field together makes life miserable for defenses and makes putting points on the board a hell of a lot easier. Especially considering Delanie Walker is essentially a guy without a position. At 6'0" he'd be the smallest starting tight-end in football. 6'0" guy going across the middle of the field....or 6'6" guy with better hands going across the middle of the field, its obvious which makes a quarterback's life easier.

Ok: So we draft Fleener. So who starts and just what do we do with D. Walker (a starter on most teams) and N. Byham? Do we really draft a first rounder who we don't project to start by at least year two? If so, then why the hell would we spend a 1st on a projected backup? If not, then do we really bring V. Davis off the bench, and start Fleener in his 2nd year? (Dose anyone really think Fleener is that good?) And if the later is the case then I can see this being a disaster the locker room. V. Davis would not be happy coming off the bench in the least, or worst demand a trade at some point, rightfully so. That could push him back into his old me-first ways. D. Walker would be right in not wanting to reduce his role and be the 3rd TE when he could start for most NFL teams.

See, for me this is elementary. Teams look for starters in the first round. I don't care how good he is, you don't draft a blue chip TE in the 1st round on a team with a very established blue chip TE star, another who would be a starter on most teams, and a good banger TE, all already on the roster. It just doesn't make sense from a roster standpoint. Aside from the fact that you would be drafting an un-needed position - in the first round no less - you run the risk of of disrupting an already very tight locker room. I just don't see Trent Baalke and Jim Harbaugh going down the TE round in the first.
yea i dont want to draft Wright because we have KW and Ginn . And if Gronk wasnt limping it would have been a different game
Originally posted by 9ersLiferInChicago:
"Were we watching the same game? Did you somehow miss Hernandez repeatedly gashing the Giants, over and over again, for a touchdown and 1st down after 1st down, or a gimpy Gronkowski making a huge catch over the middle of the field. If anything that game showed the value of having explosive tight-ends. The Giants receivers looked great against a shoddy Patriots secondary, but realistically there's not many receivers who didn't this year. Manningham made his big catch against Julian F'n Edelman for crying out loud......that really isn't saying much."

Yes, we were watching the same game. Yes, I saw how Hernandez repeatedly gashed the Giants over and over. But I saw how that didn't help NE win. You can site NE's DB's and that everyone that played NE's D looked well all you want. It still don't change the fact that NE's TE mismatch/playmakers could not match that of NY's WR mismatches.
Great, New England has a s**t secondary, Giants have a markedly better defense and Hernandez was hurting them over and over again, and that's with a gimpy Gronkowski who looked to be less than 50%.

The Giants could have used a big tight-end when their receivers were locked down on several 3 and out's. The Patriots didn't have as much trouble moving the ball down the field as they did have big whiffs from both their receivers and tight-ends. Brady was placing the ball pretty well and guys simply didn't step up to make plays, that happens, but the Giants seemed to flail around helplessly when the Patriots were moving the ball and Boley looked absolutely HELPLESS to stop Hernandez.

Has nothing to do with my central point. Boley looking "absolutely HELPLESS" meant nothing to the end result. In fact, I think it proves my point as to why the 49ers don't need to select a TE in the 1st round, especially seeing that we already have two good ones and decent one. I do agree, though, that NE had guys (the WR's) who didn't step up. And for this reason, I bet NE take a WR in the first (or spend for one in FA), even if Fleener is there for them.
Actually it shows that the 49ers need playmakers and a big, talented tight-end is more difficult to cover than a #2 possession receiver which is all you're getting at the end of the 1st round.

To me, that game reiterated what a great advantage it is to have two very good tight-ends, as well as a top-notch defense. An explosive, big-tight end does more for this team than a slow, fat-f**k receiver like Jeffery or a guy who catches the ball using his body the way Floyd does. The 49ers have two serviceable possession receivers in Morgan and Crabtree, they don't need anymore.

Obviously, not only were we indeed watching two different games, but two different 49er seasons as well. "Serviceable"?, Good lord man, the 49ers won't win a Super Bowl or even go deeper into the playoffs with "two serviceable possession receivers" unless there is a real legit #1 WR in front of them both who commands double teams! And I disagree with you about Jeffery and Floyd (and so would most scouts). Either of those guys would be #1 on our team, in the least a big upgrade to the WR's we have on our WR depth chart. Morgan is a solid #2. Crabs would be your "serviceable" #3 in my book because "serviceable" is about all he's shown me. He needs to be at least pushed with drafted 3rd, 4th, or 5th round talent.
LOL, what #1 receiver are you finding at the end of the 1st round? Are you under the illusion that Larry Fitzgerald is going to be hanging around back there? There's nothing but more Crabtree-type possession receivers. Seeing that, why not go ahead and pick a guy who will create a mismatch on the field instead of a guy who gets shutdown by a cornerback. Crabtree is a legitimate #2 receiver, Morgan is a #2/3.......you're not going to find that Sanu or a guy like that is a substantial improvement over what the 49ers already have.
Also your "most scouts" b******t is getting tired, you have a right to an opinion just as I do, but there's a reason why Jeffery is falling down in every single mock draft and the reason is that those goofy scout guys are genuinely worried about him, about whether he's got what it takes to succeed at this level, and whether or not he'll show up out of shape on a yearly basis. In anycase, IN MY OPINION, the guy has bust written all over him and won't even be in the NFL 4 years from now.

They need one guy who is an absolute burner and can stretch the field like crazy, that's not Floyd, Sanu and especially not Jeffery. If they could somehow get Kendall Wright, that would be a huge addition, but mostly they need a big playmaker in the middle of the field and call me crazy but I can't think of a top contender in the NFC that can shut down two top tight-ends, on the other hand, the Giants among other teams have shown they can shut down two top receivers and did so convincingly against the Packers

Did not Kyle Williams prove he can burn people down field in 2011? Kendall Wright is good, but we don't need anymore 5-11, 180 tweener types for our type of offense. We have two of them (Ginn and Williams). BTW, the Giants could stop NE's TE's but they was able to win with their wide-outs.
No, he didn't, not at all. Other than one breakout game against the Rams and the worst secondary in football, he was up and down. Also, your point would be more valid if Ginn could actually catch the damn ball. BTW, the Giants couldn't stop the Patriots TE's, Gronkowski was injured, Hernandez ran wild on them, the Patriots having a horrible secondary isn't helping your point when you have Manningham being defended by Edelman(another WR).

Playmaker is this team's BIGGEST need and I see a play-making tight-end that is far more ready to contribute right off the bat than any receiver available late in the 1st round. Points on the board are what count, put 2 top tight-ends on the field together makes life miserable for defenses and makes putting points on the board a hell of a lot easier. Especially considering Delanie Walker is essentially a guy without a position. At 6'0" he'd be the smallest starting tight-end in football. 6'0" guy going across the middle of the field....or 6'6" guy with better hands going across the middle of the field, its obvious which makes a quarterback's life easier.

Ok: So we draft Fleener. So who starts and just what do we do with D. Walker (a starter on most teams) and N. Byham?
Delanie Walker isn't starting as tight-end for anyone else. He's 6'0" and realistically a tweener. Put him as an H-Back or out on the field in 3-TE situations and then let him walk next season. Byham is almost entirely a blocking tight-end, that used to be sufficient but because the position has evolved, he'll be the #3 tight-end at best.
Do we really draft a first rounder who we don't project to start by at least year two? If so, then why the hell would we spend a 1st on a projected backup?
Funny that you say that because Fleener is the most ready to start of any player the 49ers could draft. He knows the system, he fits into Harbaugh's offense and the 2-TE set would be the dominant one in the offense anyways, meaning VD and Fleener out on the field almost all of the time. If you're looking for immediate impact, Fleener is the guy.
If not, then do we really bring V. Davis off the bench, and start Fleener in his 2nd year? (Dose anyone really think Fleener is that good?) And if the later is the case then I can see this being a disaster the locker room. V. Davis would not be happy coming off the bench in the least, or worst demand a trade at some point, rightfully so. That could push him back into his old me-first ways. D. Walker would be right in not wanting to reduce his role and be the 3rd TE when he could start for most NFL teams.
What are you on about? This team runs loads of 2-TE sets, its what Harbaugh specialized in at Stanford, pretty much his calling card, if Fleener is drafted, neither him nor VD are sitting on the bench. Find me the other teams that Walker would start for, a 6 foot guy who isn't a WR or a TE, you're way overrating him. If he gets upset, too bad, sorry.
Not sure if you realize this, but a team can have 2 TE's starting. Its why Aaron Hernandez had more receiving yards than any single 49ers WR's receiver this year and he was the #2 TE for New England. Your problem is that you're attached to the hip of some sort of archaic traditional model that is being turned on its ear.

"You need 2 WR's, a TE, a RB and a FB." Meh. I think this offense does better with 2 TE's since it really makes it more difficult for the defense to decide if you're running or passing the ball and if you're 2 TE's happen to be major threats, then so much the better.


See, for me this is elementary. Teams look for starters in the first round.
Which is why Fleener is the perfect pick for this team, from Day 1 he's ready to go, I'm glad we can agree on that at least.
I don't care how good he is, you don't draft a blue chip TE in the 1st round on a team with a very established blue chip TE star, another who would be a starter on most teams, and a good banger TE, all already on the roster. It just doesn't make sense from a roster standpoint. Aside from the fact that you would be drafting an un-needed position - in the first round no less - you run the risk of of disrupting an already very tight locker room. I just don't see Trent Baalke and Jim Harbaugh going down the TE round in the first.
Because you lack imagination, if you draft a guy that is going to be a starter on your offense, does it matter one f**king bit whether he's a WR or a TE? Absolutely not, adding that the TE creates bigger matchup problems for defenses overall, it really does make a lot of sense. I never realized that you got special points for when your WR scored a touchdown as compared to when your tight-end scored a touchdown.


.......
[ Edited by Phoenix49ers on Feb 6, 2012 at 5:11 PM ]
When I was watching the super bowl the difference to me was Welker did not catch the last pass in the second to the last drive. Normally he catches that pass but last night he didn't. I thought that the Giants receivers made the catches that they needed and the Patriots WRs/TEs did not. It was that simple. I thought Cruz, Nicks, and Manningham were the better set of receivers last night. If Welker had caught that last pass in the second to the last drive, I think New England would have won the game. They were driving, using up the clock, and would have had a fresh set of downs. If they had finished that drive they would have won. As we know there was not much separation between the two teams. I think New York just made 2-3 less mistakes than New England. I also thought that the turnover battle again went in New Yorks favor. Two fumbles and they did not lose one of them. But in the end Manningham made an important catch and Welker missed his most important catch.

I think the moral of the story for San Francisco is they need WRs/TEs who can catch and are willing to catch. I personally would be willing to trade Crabtree for another high draft pick. I do not see him as a valuable part of the Niners. I thought Morgan would go and catch difficult balls. I even think Kyle Williams will go and catch difficult passes. I think Crabs will catch high balls but it does not seem that his heart is into the game with the Niners. I think Morgan, Williams, Davis, Fleener, Adams would be a nice set of receivers assuming that Fleener/Adams will go all out to catch the ball. Speed and willingness to catch all kinds of throws is what I want in my receivers. So whoever those receivers are I want them and I don't care if they are WRs or TEs.

We need one other thing and that is to settle on Ginn as our ST captain and we need someone else who is good enough to replace Ginn if he got hurt.
Originally posted by Phoenix49ers:
Originally posted by OnTheClock:
I don't agree with all of this, but here's what I'll say:

1. I would have no qualms trading up for Kendall Wright. If he runs a 4.3, it may be difficult to though, because he could go as high at 7th overall if he does. 4.4 though, and he could make it to the early 20s. Wright would provide an AMAZING boost to this club's passing game by providing a monster slot/starting-caliber wideout. Crabtree-Morgan-Wright with DAVIS playing TE or split out wide looks beautiful.

2. I am starting to think, more and more, that Fleener would be at least one of the top 5 best options at #30.

3. I am not a fan of Toon or Sanu (for this team, I mean). Both are good players, but provide zero complementary element to our team. Toon is like Morgan, Sanu is very similar to Crabtree. He is an explosive college player, and he has good hands, but he'll be a possession WR, and I also worry he may get hurt a lot in the NFL.


THANK YOU!


People are suggesting that the 49ers draft players which basically resemble what the 49ers already have. To me that's dumb. Crabtree is a serviceable possession receiver, if you're going to bring in another WR, make sure its someone who is distinctly different, who is lightning quick, a true down field threat but a lot of the guys available are basically like Crabtree clones. Sanu, Floyd...etc. Fleener represents something that the 49ers DO NOT have, as well as Wright and some of the smaller faster receivers, but those are all guys who will be available in rounds 2, 3 and further.

The other possibility is a big, speedy WR with #1 potential. Streeter fits that definition, he's raw but at least he has a high ceiling. With a guy like Sanu you're basically adding another #2 receiver to a team that already has its fair share.

To be fair, I wouldn't TOTALLY hate if we drafted Sanu, because I do really like the player, and will acknowledge he's a little bit faster than Crabtree and just as powerful of a blocker. Toon, However, I just don't see the appeal. He doesn't appear to be a guy who will be an NFL playmaker. Sanu I could see it possibly.

If we get a possession receiver, I'd prefer it to be a tower of a receiver, around 6-4 or taller. Not a fan of Jeffery, but I'd trust the staff if they made that pick.
@Phoenix49ers
Well, if you don't think Sanu, Jeffery, or Floyd (one of which will be available to us) are significant upgrades for a team really needing significant upgrades at the WR position then that's your entitled opinion. If you don't think you can find starters late in round one then that's your entitled opinion. If you don't think that D. Walker is a starter on most teams and I'm overrating him that's your opinion. If you actually think we can get back to the playoffs and win a SB with "serviceable" receivers, then God bless you but that's your entitled opinion.

What are you on about? This team runs loads of 2-TE sets, its what Harbaugh specialized in at Stanford, pretty much his calling card, if Fleener is drafted, neither him nor VD are sitting on the bench. Find me the other teams that Walker would start for, a 6 foot guy who isn't a WR or a TE, you're way overrating him.

Again, what do we do with V. Davis? Do we bring Vernon of the bench? True, we ran a lot of two TE sets, but we didn't feature it (i.e our base offense). No team was silly enough to. We ran plenty of Gore/Hunter back fields, but it wasn't featured. We split V. Davis and D. Walker out wide a whole lot, but it wasn't featured. One TE, two backs, and two WR's - that our base look. At the expense of repeating myself, in your draft scenario what do we do with V. Davis? In humble my opinion, your draft scenario potentially divides this strong locker room, all to play out some imagination you say I don't have.

Now, we can go back and forth pontificating the finer angles as to whether we should go "playmaker" or need until the draft. But these are the facts: This teams biggest need is a legit #1 WR. TE was not the problem all season and wasn't the reason we lost to the Giants. "Playmaker" isn't a position specific term, so teams don't draft on that bases. Those are the facts man. We're entitled to our own opinions, but not our own facts.
[ Edited by 9ersLiferInChicago on Feb 6, 2012 at 6:21 PM ]
Originally posted by Phoenix49ers:

Bottom line...Fleener has experience in the system, he's got better physical size than any WR the 49ers could hope to draft at 30, he presents a bigger matchup problem defensively than any receiver the 49ers could hope to draft at 30, he runs extremely crisp routes, has good hands, the ability to make catches well above his head, even one-handed, he's got decent speed for a guy his size.....there's way too many advantages to take a possession receiver over him.

I don't think highly of most of the receivers that are going to be available at 30, I think a guy like Sanu can make some nice plays but when it comes down to a big-time game, teams will be able to lock him down with solid CB play and he won't represent a major advantage over say Josh Morgan. Fleener on the other hand, teams would absolutely have to account for, along with Vernon Davis and that will create a great deal of mismatches that the 49ers can exploit.

Look at the teams the 49ers have to compete against. The Saints have struggled for years to shut down good tight-ends. The Giants and Packers are also vulnerable, do you simply accept that you have a slight matchup advantage......or slam it down their throat and force them to react or get crushed?

Most teams tend to struggle when defending one very good tight-end, defending two very-good tight-ends is hell at this point. Eventually the league will adjust and compensate for that, but for right now, its a big advantage to be utilized, so why not exploit it? Take a WR in the 2nd round or 3rd round, get a project that has a shot to be a #1 receiver one day, a guy like Streeter or Hill, even someone like McNutt.

The difference between the TE's available at the end of the 1st and the TE's in the rest of the draft is a lot bigger than the WR's available at the end of the 1st round and the rest of the draft. There's Blackmon and there's a bunch of guys with varying strengths and weakness who are total hit and miss prospects. I see Fleener as a lot more of a sure thing than most of the WR's out there.

Excellent points here Phoenix....and I quite agree with the ones highlighted above...especially this one... Fleener has experience in the system, he's got better physical size than any WR the 49ers could hope to draft at 30 and presents a bigger matchup problem defensively than any receiver the 49ers could hope to draft at 30.

I would just add that he would be a big threat on 3rd downs and in the red zone...helping to solve the biggest problems the Niners had this season...and he would help immediately. Memo to Baalke...go get this guy.

Cheers!
Originally posted by dj43:
Here is how I see the TE situation:

A TE must be both a blocker and a receiver in today's NFL. We have good blockers in Davis and Walker. Byham also has proven to be a very good blocker.

Walker is supposed to be a good pass catcher but his hands are suspect. Davis is good on deep patterns where he can use his speed but his lack of agility in adjusting to passes and inability to read and adjust based on defensive reads (he seemed to improve somewhat toward the end of the year) has hampered the offense a lot, particularly in reacting to blitz and pressure situations. Byham is an unknown in terms of his receiving skills.

What the 49ers need is TALL TE that has the ability to read defenses and make adjustments, as well as having the agility to adjust to catch passes often thrown hurriedly and slightly off target. This guy does not need burner speed but must be able to work in those tight areas to find room to move the chains. The 49ers do not have that guy now.

My solution would be to try to package Walker with a draft pick to move to acquire the type of TE that would compliment what Davis does. We don't need 5 TEs on the team. Between Walker, Davis, Byham and Reuland (Peele is cut), we can live without one and Walker would have the most trade value - likely a 4th, perhaps a 3rd.

Of course Harbaugh may feel Reuland is the guy and that is fine with me, but we need to fill this need if we are to have a complete passing offense.

Ironically, Walker's blocking has improved greatly since the Niners drafted him but he has disappointed as a receiver. Most thought receiving would be his strength and blocking would be his weakness. The Niners could trade him or they could simply play him at H-back and on special teams, where he would certainly contribute.

If the Niners do indeed pull the trigger on Fleener in the first, I like your idea of trading him, however, for a 3rd or 4th round pick, since the Niners have Miller now and they could use Byham, an excellent blocker, as an H-back if necessary. Pairing Fleener with Davis would be a nightmare for opposing defenses, not only in the passing game but in the running game too. Since he already knows the system, the Niners would get much more productivity out of him as a rookie than they are likely to get from any rookie WR... In many ways, he is the perfect fit for the Niners..

Even if they got Fleener, however, the team still needs to upgrade its WR position... I would suggest signing a guy like Meachem or Manningham depending on the price. The latter may have just gotten a big paycheck after yesterday's game however, so he may be off the table. If D Jackson would be willing to come to SF for a discount, he would really help too. Can you imagine adding Fleener and D Jackson to this team? Nice.
Originally posted by nw9erfan:
Ironically, Walker's blocking has improved greatly since the Niners drafted him but he has disappointed as a receiver. Most thought receiving would be his strength and blocking would be his weakness. The Niners could trade him or they could simply play him at H-back and on special teams, where he would certainly contribute.

If the Niners do indeed pull the trigger on Fleener in the first, I like your idea of trading him, however, for a 3rd or 4th round pick, since the Niners have Miller now and they could use Byham, an excellent blocker, as an H-back if necessary. Pairing Fleener with Davis would be a nightmare for opposing defenses, not only in the passing game but in the running game too. Since he already knows the system, the Niners would get much more productivity out of him as a rookie than they are likely to get from any rookie WR... In many ways, he is the perfect fit for the Niners..

Even if they got Fleener, however, the team still needs to upgrade its WR position... I would suggest signing a guy like Meachem or Manningham depending on the price. The latter may have just gotten a big paycheck after yesterday's game however, so he may be off the table. If D Jackson would be willing to come to SF for a discount, he would really help too. Can you imagine adding Fleener and D Jackson to this team? Nice.

Walker would be more likely worth a 5th or 6th. The guy isn't a starting tight-end in the NFL. Too undersized as a TE, hands are too suspect to be a regular WR, he's a utility player at best. This is why the 49ers need another TRUE tight-end to start, a guy who can receive, dominate the middle of the field, block and make the big-time plays on 3rd down and in the red-zone, someone who complements VD, Crabtree and makes the defense truly pick their poison.

Even if you draft Fleener in the first round, you can still take a receiver in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th.......hell, there's top receivers in the NFL from every single round. Guys like Cruz and Welker went undrafted which is why I don't see the big need for emphasis on a WR. You're not getting an immediate #1 guy in the 1st round, forget about that, so I'm all for swinging for the fences and getting a guy with #1 potential such as Streeter later on. WR's tend to take time to develop other than the really ridiculous freaks of nature like Fitzgerald and Calvin Johnson and unless you're drafting in the Top 5, you're not getting any of them anyways, not that there's a guy like that in this draft.

Instead of drafting a #2 possession receiver, which the 49ers already have in Crabtree, get the star tight-end and then draft a guy who might possibly develop into a #1 which could be Streeter or Hill or a couple of other guys with exceptionally high ceilings. Afterwards scour the undrafted players and take a shot, maybe you don't find anyone worthwhile, or maybe you find a Baldwin, Cruz, Welker.....even a guy like Colston who went in the 7th round.

WR isn't an emergency need for this need, they simply need playmaker's to stretch the field. Fleener better fits the definition of playmaker and immediate impact player than any other receiver the 49ers can draft, period.

As far as free agency I think Meachem could be a solid addition, an affordable impact signing that helps improve this team at WR and gives them a solid core of Meachem, Crabtree, Morgan and Williams. Add Fleener to the mix and another receiver in the 3rd round or later and this team will have a pretty decent core that should lead to a much more productive offense next season.
[ Edited by Phoenix49ers on Feb 7, 2012 at 12:02 AM ]
Very good debate here and don't think either side is necessarily wrong. There's more than 1 way to build a team.

I think if you look at the Super Bowl and the playoffs in general Victor Cruz was the most dominant player. New England had to focus their attention to shutting him down opening other players up. He completely dominated us in the 1st half of our game too.

Gronkowski and Hernendez is the perfect pair of tight ends and you can tell New England suffered bc of Gronk's injury because it took away the seam pass.

While I agree with the idea that finding a 6'6 athletic tight end would be perfect to compliment Vernon I'm not that high on Fleener though. Me personally I'm just going to live with Vernon and Delanie and look for another tight end on another day.
[ Edited by tjd808185 on Feb 7, 2012 at 6:28 AM ]
Originally posted by tjd808185:
Very good debate here and don't think either side is necessarily wrong. There's more than 1 way to build a team.

I think if you look at the Super Bowl and the playoffs in general Victor Cruz was the most dominant player. New England had to focus their attention to shutting him down opening other players up. He completely dominated us in the 1st half of our game too.

Gronkowski and Hernendez is the perfect pair of tight ends and you can tell New England suffered bc of Gronk's injury because it took away the seam pass.

While I agree with the idea that finding a 6'6 athletic tight end would be perfect to compliment Vernon I'm not that high on Fleener though. Me personally I'm just going to live with Vernon and Delanie and look for another tight end on another day.
You are absolutely right.

But here's the question I have yet to see anyone answer: What do we do with Vernon Davis? You draft for starters in the first round, even late in the first. So what do we tell Vernon after putting up All Pro numbers and going to the Pro Bowl? Take one for the team? This is a business? All this talk about siding him with Vernon is great but there's the vital detail of who would be the starter between the two. Sure, we run a lot of two TE sets, but its not our featured look. Vernon - the starter - gets the lions share of the snaps between he and D. Walker. So, if we draft Fleener do we actually expect Vernon to take a reduced role to just two TE sets so an unproven rookie can start (after all, we are talking about drafting Fleener in the first meaning he eventually gets most of the snaps)? Or, if we don't expect Fleener to start then why in the hell are we drafting a projected backup in the first round? OK, I get trading D. Walker. You get no argument from me on that. But the question still has to be answered as to how we deal with Vernon after drafting a TE in the first.
Originally posted by 9ersLiferInChicago:
You are absolutely right.

But here's the question I have yet to see anyone answer: What do we do with Vernon Davis? You draft for starters in the first round, even late in the first. So what do we tell Vernon after putting up All Pro numbers and going to the Pro Bowl? Take one for the team? This is a business? All this talk about siding him with Vernon is great but there's the vital detail of who would be the starter between the two. Sure, we run a lot of two TE sets, but its not our featured look. Vernon - the starter - gets the lions share of the snaps between he and D. Walker. So, if we draft Fleener do we actually expect Vernon to take a reduced role to just two TE sets so an unproven rookie can start (after all, we are talking about drafting Fleener in the first meaning he eventually gets most of the snaps)? Or, if we don't expect Fleener to start then why in the hell are we drafting a projected backup in the first round? OK, I get trading D. Walker. You get no argument from me on that. But the question still has to be answered as to how we deal with Vernon after drafting a TE in the first.
I really don't get what your mental block about this whole situation is? You can have a 2 TE set as your base set. Its basically what New England did, its what Harbaugh did at Stanford, if they go out and draft Fleener, both VD and Fleener are starters. I'm really confused about the issues you're having with this. Both Gronkowski and Hernandez had over 900 yards receiving for the Patriots this year, more than any single 49ers receiver. You CAN successfully have 2 full-time TE's, its been done, just can't imagine why it is so hard for you to grasp.
[ Edited by Phoenix49ers on Feb 7, 2012 at 8:41 AM ]
Originally posted by tjd808185:
Very good debate here and don't think either side is necessarily wrong. There's more than 1 way to build a team.

I think if you look at the Super Bowl and the playoffs in general Victor Cruz was the most dominant player. New England had to focus their attention to shutting him down opening other players up. He completely dominated us in the 1st half of our game too.

Gronkowski and Hernendez is the perfect pair of tight ends and you can tell New England suffered bc of Gronk's injury because it took away the seam pass.

While I agree with the idea that finding a 6'6 athletic tight end would be perfect to compliment Vernon I'm not that high on Fleener though. Me personally I'm just going to live with Vernon and Delanie and look for another tight end on another day.

I disagree, I think Fleener is basically as good as it gets. Its been said that he runs the best routes of any tight-end picked in the draft in the past few years, he's got tremendous hands, great leaping ability(former basketball player), has experience playing wide receiver and as a kicker.............pretty much know the offensive system already. Allen maybe more athletic but I don't think there's a single player in this draft who could come to this team better prepared to start from Day 1 than Coby Fleener.






right now getting a potential future #1 WR is better than getting a #3 or number 2 TE at the very best

sanu floyd wright all fit that mold

i wouldnt be uspet with getting fleener but id much rather take a reciever at this point given our current roster
Originally posted by 49ersalldaway126:
right now getting a potential future #1 WR is better than getting a #3 or number 2 TE at the very best

sanu floyd wright all fit that mold

i wouldnt be uspet with getting fleener but id much rather take a reciever at this point given our current roster

LOL, what the hell are people basing this off of? Sanu or Floyd are nice enough but they're both complementary receivers, possession guys, just like Crabtree.


A #1 guy is a Fitzgerald, a Calvin Johnson, a Marques Colston...etc. There really are no true #1 guys at the top of this draft, there's some raw guys with higher ceilings such as Streeter, but at the end of the 1st round you're getting another Crabtree, meaning another receiver who can be shutdown by a single CB.




The Giants shutdown better receivers when they played the Packers, but struggled with Hernandez at TE and a one-legged Gronkowski. What does that tell you?



The ideal situation for a guy like Sanu is to go to the Texans or the Patriots, teams where he can be a secondary option, not "the option." Blackmon might be the only guy in the draft who truly fits the #1 moniker, but even so there's questions about him. My thought process is, take the guy who's most ready to contribute from Day 1 and for many reasons, that is Fleener.

Now if Brooks walks, this is all a moot point as taking an OLB with the first pick would become the most pressing need.
[ Edited by Phoenix49ers on Feb 7, 2012 at 9:07 AM ]