Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports


Todd McShay has 49ers going cornerback, not quarterback, in latest mock draft

Jan 7, 2021 at 7:53 AM--


With the 2020 NFL season over for those teams not in the playoffs, like the San Francisco 49ers, it's officially mock-draft season. The Niners own the No. 12 overall pick in this year's rookie selection process.

ESPN analyst Todd McShay released his latest mock draft, which does not include any trades, given the draft is still months away. He has just two quarterbacks — Trevor Lawrence of Clemson and Zach Wilson of BYU — being selected ahead of the 49ers' first-round selection. Yet, the analyst doesn't have general manager John Lynch, head coach Kyle Shanahan, and company going with a rookie passer.

Instead, McShay has the 49ers bolstering their defensive backfield. San Francisco doesn't have any cornerbacks signed moving forward, so the thought to add to a position that might see significant change heading into the 2021 season isn't unthinkable.

With the No. 12 overall pick, McShay has the 49ers selecting cornerback Caleb Farley of Virginia Tech.

"The 49ers' pass defense was a strength this season, ranking fourth in yards allowed per game (207.9). But here's the list of pending unrestricted free agents at cornerback: Richard Sherman, Jason Verrett, Ahkello Witherspoon, K'Waun Williams and Dontae Johnson. Injuries hurt San Francisco all over this season, but there isn't a bigger question mark on the team going forward than at corner. Enter Farley, a 2020 opt-out with terrific ball skills. He had four interceptions for the Hokies in 2019."

Farley (6-2, 207) recorded 56 tackles, a tackle for a loss, a sack, six interceptions, a touchdown, and 19 passes defensed through two seasons with Virginia Tech.

McShay acknowledges that the 49ers going with a quarterback is possible, especially if Justin Fields of Ohio State were to fall to them. Of course, the analyst points out that he probably won't fall that far in the actual draft. McShay has Fields falling to the New England Patriots at No. 15, but mainly because of the rules established within his mock draft.

"Could the Niners make a change at QB? Of course, especially if Justin Fields were actually to fall this far," added McShay. "(He is dropping in this mock mainly because there aren't any trades.) Jimmy Garoppolo is only under contract for two more seasons, has very little guaranteed money still owed to him and has battled injuries during his time with the 49ers."

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