I think we learned a lot about last years "redshirt" class as well as our entire roster from this draft. Here are 10 takeaways from the draft.
1. Every expert thought that we would draft a NT high, so what did we do? Not draft ANY true NT prospects. I think the staff felt like having a 2 down NT is a thing of the past and not worth another roster spot. They addressed the loss of Soap and RJF with Dorsey, who wasn't the pass rusher KC thought they were getting, but can stuff the run. Unlike RJF and Soap, Dorsey can shoot the gap much better and can push the pocket. To back him up we still have Ian Williams who the staff deemed better than Jessie Williams or they would have drafted Jessie ( we could have had him a couple times ). The 9ers feel very comfortable with Dorsey and Ian at NT.
2. Most people thought we would draft a second Safety to groom for Dante's replacement. We drafted a long, fast safety in Reid who runs a 4.5 forty and has a 40 in vert. Some people wanted us to draft Elam, but Reid is a better all around prospect. On top of that, we may already have Elam???
5'10", 208 lbs, 4.54 forty, 17 reps, 35.5 vert, 118 broad
Last two years of college production
154 Tackles, 6 INT, 18 PD
5'10", 195, 4.52 forty, 15 reps, 35 vert, 125 broad
Last two years of college production
156 Tackles, 8 INT, 18 PD
The 9ers like what Trent can do to fill in for Dante next year, or flip him to FS and have Ried as the SS. Both seem to be interchangable, something the staff covets.
3. Most people did not see us drafting OLB. We drafted pass rush stud Corey Lemonier. This means that the 9ers staff wanted to provide as much competition at OLB as possible. If Lemonier can show the 1st round burst he displayed his soph year at Auburn, Cam is probably a gonner. The 9ers may opt to stay young and cut Haralson, but with a SB on the line this year, I really think they keep the well rounded Haralson on the roster to protect against an injury. He restructured so he is cheap, experienced, can stuff the run and provide a pass rush if needed. He is way too valuable to let go and can rotate with both OLB right now with little drop off. Fleming, Cam and Lemonier are all raw, there is a steep drop off from Haralson to those in this D. This also may mean Fleming may shift to ILB with Haralson and Corey as the top backups. Corey may also see some time in Nickle to rush the passer.
4. Most people thougth we would draft a CB high. We picked up some bodies at the end, but it is clear that the 9ers staff reviewed the pass breakdowns at the end of the year and pinpointed them to pass rush, not covering. When the 9ers had the pass rush, we ranked 2nd in the league in Pass D ( still finished 1st in NFC passing yards per game ). With the 9ers investing in Tank and Corey, the message is loud and clear, the pass rush is the key. Hell the Giants have been winning for years with a great pass rush and no corners. The 9ers must also like Rogers to bounce back or Cox to step up this year in the slot.
The rest of the picks made sense.
5. No C or OG were drafted high since they like Looney and Kilgore. One if not both will be groomed to compete/start at C in 2014.
6. They brought in some OT bodies to compete for the swing tackle opening.
7. Brought in some bodies to compete at backup ILB and for ST's: Nick Moody, Dan Skuta, Michael Wilhoite, Nate Stupar..add in Fleming I think.
8. Brought in a perfect slot WR with great hands in Patton. He has the makeup this staff loves and should push AJ and Lockette for the starting #3 spot.
9. Brought in a big bodied, strong TE who can develop into a premier blocker and red zone threat. He is bigger, faster, stronger, has a higher vert, wing span and hands than Ertz or any other TE in this class. Jimmy has always had an eye for TE talent, Im pumped to see what his first handpicked NFL TE prospect will become.
10. Drafting Lattimore to stash on the PUP for a year and unleash when Frank hangs em up. Was always a big fan of Lattimore and this is the perfect situation for him.
I have to say that I loved this draft, solid B+! We wont really know how good this class is until a couple years down the line, but god I love the look of it initially.
What do you guys think? What conclusions did you come to with what you thought before and what was actually done?
[ Edited by DRUSTOPO on Apr 29, 2013 at 8:41 AM ]