49ers Draft Walking Wounded

Apr 29, 2013 at 7:21 AM2


Pundits, perhaps rightly, have lavished praise on 49er personnel honchos and their scouts for the just-completed draft. We love to hype the stars, and, competitive unto obsession, we like to believe our home team can out-draft their NFL counterparts. However, with regard to the 2013 San Francisco draft, another group also deserves vast credit: the 49ers' team medical staff, including trainers, strength-and-conditioning coaches, rehabbers, as well as, decidedly, the deluxe medical crew from Stanford University, with whom the Niners closely consult.

Consider the 49ers' early-draft choices. Eric Reid's shoulders made some teams wary, as did Vance McDonald's past problems with his shoulders. Other teams red-flagged Cornelius Carradine because of his knee. We all know about Marcus Lattimore. Arguably all of these players, but especially so in the cases of Carradine and Lattimore, would have been selected earlier if not for their potential health problems.

Of course, almost all athletes who have played sports from an early age experience various medical setbacks, some major and some merely annoyances, at some point during their careers. However, the preponderance of medical issues among the current batch of 49er early-rounders constitutes a theme for the 2013 draft: players who, after consultation and continuous intense work with medical professionals, may provide extraordinary value once they heal and rehab.

At high levels of achievement, risk abounds in most endeavors. One of the 49ers' currently healthy draftees could step on a rake or sprain his ankle on a faulty stair, as any of us mere mortals might do. Scouts sometimes make mistaken assessments. Personal problems can send players astray. Jim Harbaugh may soon leave to coach the Ravens. Completely risk-free plans, in fact, usually lack boldness. But the 49ers do, despite this unavoidable uncertainty, do their due diligence, both with cutting-edge analytics and state-of-the-art medical prognoses.

Did this medical expertise provide the Niners with an edge? Only in the fullness of time, obviously, as, indeed, with any draft, will we be able to fully judge the 2013 class. Also, a player's mental makeup, as much as his physical attributes, will determine his future prospects. But, in a few years hence, if we see a couple of superb starters, perhaps a pro-bowler, as well as some rotation players from this class, let us not then stint on appreciation for the dedicated medical folks who made the 2013 49ers' draft possible.
The views within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


2 Comments

  • Chris Richardson
    Better then drafting the dead every year, like the Browns.
    May 2, 2013 at 5:11 PM
    0
    Response: Maybe it helps them manage the salary cap. Actually, I have a soft spot for Cleveland, because of the Paul Brown-Bill Walsh connection, however contentious in their later years. The Browns will rise again.
  • Monsterniner
    I'm not worried about the injury problems of our rookies because the medical science is outstanding nowadays specially in the sports and I remember a RB drafted by the Niners with knee-injury problems that became a beast runing the ball..............his name is Frank Gore.
    Apr 29, 2013 at 6:33 PM
    0
    Response: May this year's rookies follow in the healed footsteps of Frank Gore.

Facebook Comments



More San Francisco 49ers News



Round Table: Predicting the 49ers' record and place in the NFC West standings

By Site Staff
Sep 8, 2020

The San Francisco 49ers are preparing to begin an unprecedented 2020 campaign. It could be very unpredictable as the team, along with 31 other NFL squads, navigates a season impacted by COVID-19. San Francisco is coming off a devastating Super Bowl defeat and has its sights set on returning to and winning the big game. First, it will need to win the NFC West and fight for playoff position in a reworked format that will feature only one team per conference with a bye week. We asked the 49ers Webzone staff to predict the Niners' final regular-season record and placement in the NFC West standings. Below are the responses in the order in which they were received. Sterling Bennett Record: 12-4 Note: First place in the

Read the Full Article


49ers Super Again, Raiders on the Rise: The Complete 2020 NFL Season Preview

By Gilbert Brink
Sep 9, 2020

The NFL is about to embark upon a season like no other in history. 32 teams have compiled active 53-man rosters and 16-man practice squads during a global pandemic. For much of the offseason, it felt like we may not have any football in watch in 2020. Due to the diligent efforts of the NFL, players, coaches and trainers, the league is ready to kick off this Thursday night. Let's all pause for a second and be grateful that America's game will be played this Sunday and we all will be there tuned in for a much needed day of entertainment. If you want to know what is going to happen this season, you've turned to the right place. This season preview will discuss division winners, wild-card teams, annual awards, and even the Super Bowl winner. Why waste anymore words? Let's get

Read the Full Article


Film from the Field House: Five Plays Kyle Shanahan Will Call for the San Francisco 49ers in Week 1

By Bret Rumbeck
Sep 10, 2020

A long time ago, I thought the most unprecedented event in the sports world was Game 3 of the 1989 World Series getting pushed back ten days due to an earthquake. Sports will find a way to endure - through earthquakes, war, a global pandemic and if professional football is played before a couch-bound audience. The San Francisco 49ers will play sloppy football Sunday, but the other NFL franchises will join them. Remember it's been nine months - if not longer - since players were on the field in a live football contest. Forty-Niner head coach Kyle Shanahan will have his men ready for Sunday afternoon, even if the game turns into a sludgy swamp of mental errors, blown coverages, and missed assignments. Indeed, the other 31 coaches in the league are

Read the Full Article

Featured

More Featured Stories

More by D.C. Owens

All Articles by D.C. Owens

More Articles

All Articles
Share 49erswebzone