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2019 NFL Draft: Expect the 49ers to add a defensive back in Round 3

Apr 26, 2019 at 5:55 PM--

The San Francisco 49ers could likely grab a defensive back in Round 3 of the 2019 NFL Draft after using their first two picks on Ohio State EDGE Nick Bosa and wide receiver Deebo Samuel in Rounds 1 and 2, respectively.

A prolific pass-rusher and wide receiver turned out to be the San Francisco 49ers' top two targets in the 2019 NFL Draft.

General manager John Lynch used the No. 2 overall pick on Ohio State EDGE Nick Bosa, then turned his attention to the offensive side of the ball by grabbing South Carolina wide receiver Deebo Samuel early in Round 2 at No. 36 overall.

Bosa should make the Niners defense significantly better all around in 2019 and beyond. That said, it wouldn't be a shock to see Lynch go after a quality defensive back when the team is back on the clock in the third round, No. 67 overall.

Pro Football Focus ranked San Francisco's secondary dead last in 2018 -- a listing made even more glaring after coordinator Robert Saleh's defense managed just two interceptions a year ago, which was obviously the worst in the NFL. While pass-rushers are certainly at a premium in today's pass-happy NFL, good cover guys are also highly valuable.

Instead, the 49ers seemed content to retain a number of their defensive backs from last year, only adding oft-injured veteran corner Jason Verrett in free agency.

Yet this could change in Round 3. While some top-quality defensive backs managed to slip past the Niners' second-round pick, including LSU cornerback Greedy Williams, a number of top players could wind up being available at No. 67 overall. Michigan State cornerback Justin Layne continues to slip, as does Delaware safety Nasir Adderley (at least at the time of this article's writing).

There are likely to be plenty of other solid options for San Francisco, too, even if Layne and/or Adderley are no longer available.

At any rate, the Niners solved arguably their two top needs: the pass rush and a promising wide receiver. Addressing the secondary sure looks like the most-pressing remaining need on Lynch's draft board.

Round 3 of the 2019 NFL Draft continues tonight, April 26 from Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Written by:
    Peter Panacy has been writing about the 49ers since 2011 for outlets like Bleacher Report, Niner Noise, 49ers Webzone, and is occasionally heard as a guest on San Francisco's 95.7 FM The Game and the Niners' flagship station, KNBR 680. Feel free to follow him, or direct any inquiries to his Twitter account.

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