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A 7-round 49ers mock draft fans can get excited about

Apr 4, 2018 at 3:35 PM--

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Our friend Dylan DeSimone posted his final seven-round San Francisco 49ers mock draft for Fourth and Nine, and it's an exciting one. Reading through a seven-round team mock can be tough for the casual football fan because, after the first few rounds of projected picks, you are often reading unfamiliar names or selections made to improve depth. Most of the excitement lies in the earlier rounds.

DeSimone's seven-round mock is different. It contains several big-name prospects you have likely heard of with the writer focusing on the best player available with each selection. Creating seven-round mock drafts can be difficult without giving a lot of thought to the other 31 teams' needs and options, which is why DeSimone utilized a simulator at Fanspeak.

Below are each of the nine selections DeSimone made while taking on the role of general manager of the 49ers.

Round 1, Pick 9: LB Roquan Smith, Georgia

A big-name pick to compete with Malcolm Smith for the Will linebacker job. He can also fill in for second-year linebacker Reuben Foster after the NFL decides on disciplinary action following his two offseason arrests, one of which was on suspicion of domestic violence.

Roquan Smith, who is the 2017 Butkus Award winner, registered college career highs of 137 combined tackles, 14 for a loss, 6.5 sacks, two passes defensed, and two fumble recoveries in 15 games last year, according to Sports Reference. He is scheduled to have a pre-draft visit with the 49ers.

A potential Foster-Smith defensive pairing has to be intriguing to the 49ers – assuming Foster can stay out of trouble.

Round 2, Pick 59: G Austin Corbett, Nevada

Corbett can plan guard or tackle but is best suited to play inside with Joe Staley and Trent Brown anchoring the edges of the offensive line.

"He is an intelligent, technically proficient and powerful offensive lineman with an ability to start on Day 1," writes DeSimone. "And since he's a tackle converting inside, the 49ers would have the flexibility to put him at left or right guard, depending on what happens in camp."

Round 3, Pick 70: DE Josh Sweat, Florida State

The 49ers worked out edge rusher Josh Sweat last month. DeSimone sees him as a Day 1 starter on defense while filling one of the team's most significant offseason needs.

"He has a ton of ability as an every-down defensive end, and as a genetic freak, the NFL world has been high on him since he was a high school recruit," wrote DeSimone.

As a junior in 2017, Sweat recorded 56 combined tackles, 12.5 for loss, 5.5 sacks, and three passes defensed.

Round 3, Pick 74: CB Holton Hill, Texas

This year's draft is viewed as deep when it comes to cornerbacks. While he doesn't necessarily see Holton Hill as an immediate starter, NFL Media draft analyst Daniel Jeremiah recently named him as a potential fit for the 49ers defense.

"Plug him in the mix, get another young, tall, long, athletic corner that's a perfect scheme fit here for the Niners," Jeremiah said this week while projecting the 49ers' first four selections on Path to the Draft.

Hill fits the profile for cornerback targets for the 49ers, who head into the season with veteran Richard Sherman and second-year player Ahkello Witherspoon slated as starters.

Round 4, Pick 130: LB Shaquem Griffin, UCF

The 49ers take their second linebacker of the draft with this selection, which is further insurance for any short-term or potentially long-term issues surrounding Foster.

Shaquem Griffin was one of the stars of the NFL Scouting Combine. Our own Alex Pedregon wrote about his performance last month.

"After thrilling the crowd in the weight room (and fans across the nation) on Saturday, Griffin (who lost his left hand in childhood) took to the field on Sunday and proceeded to run a 4.38 in the 40-yard dash, setting a combine record for linebackers," Pedregon wrote. "In an under-reported aspect to his day, he also posted a time of 6.88 in the 3-cone drill (a test of short area quickness), which placed him in the top 5 among all linebackers this year."

Griffin benched 225 pounds worth of weight 20 times with a prosthetic hand attached to his left arm. Over the past two seasons, he registered 166 combined tackles, 33.5 for a loss, 18.5 sacks, two interceptions, 10 passes defensed, four forced fumbles, and four fumble recoveries, according to Sports Reference.


You can view DeSimone's entire seven-round 49ers mock draft here, including the final four projected selections by San Francisco. Those picks all happen to address the offensive side of the football.

DeSimone will be joining the post-draft episode of our 49ers Webzone No Huddle Podcast the week after the draft.

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