Podcast: 49ers Playoff Expectations With John Chapman →

What if Vernon Davis is Gone?

Apr 28, 2006 at 9:42 AM


I am sitting at my desk trembling at the prospect of Vernon Davis being snatched up before us. If Vernon's gone, I would assume that we would select A.J. Hawk. Hawk is a pretty good pick, but where does that leave us with our 22nd pick? After Mario Williams, there are no other first round caliber traditional defensive ends. I could see the argument for Santonio Holmes, but I can't help but wonder if he's the beneficiary of a terrible crop of receivers. Besides, at some point, we need to give Hamilton and Maxwell some time to develop. We're reasonably stable along the offensive line. When our line is good, our running backs are good. We have three hefty defensive tackles. We have four cornerbacks that are no worse than number three corners, and two prospects that we're high on. Picking a safety is a decent option, but 22nd is way too high. If we were going that route, we shouldn't have made the trade with Denver.

So, there's only one position left that makes any sense. If we pick A.J. Hawk with our 6th pick, I would still take a rush-linebacker (preferably Manny Lawson) with the 22nd pick. Hear me out. The 49ers pass rush was terrible last year, and we've lost Julian Peterson and Andre Carter, leaving Brandon Moore and Bryant Young as the only guys on the roster that are capable of generating more than 3 sacks a year. If we draft Hawk, he'll be good for 5 sacks a year, but sending him one-on-one against a left tackle 70% of the time would be a waste of his talents, and an ineffective waste at that. He's built to play a traditional linebacker role, and his instincts and nose for the ball make him effective when he blitzes, but he's not a pass-rush specialist.

Which would leave us with what? Brandon Moore would have to rush the majority of the snaps. But again, like Hawk, Moore's value stems from the fact that he's a great rusher for a middle linebacker, not because he's an elite sack artist. Adding a sack specialist like Lawson or Bobby Carpenter would let us bring some serious hardwood to the table. Remember those days under Erickson when we would load up and rush eight guys and still come nowhere close to the quarterback? That would never be a problem with these guys.

If we got Hawk and Lawson, our offense would still be terrible, but our defense would be both faster and tougher than last year. We could certainly use some young blood at the defensive end position, but if Ben Emmanuel can play free safety, we would have eleven pretty decent guys out there. I'm still hoping for Vernon Davis and Lawson, but if Eric Johnson can play a full year, this scenario wouldn't be the end of the world. Michael Huff and DeAngelo Williams would be.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


0 Comments

  • No Comments

Facebook Comments



More San Francisco 49ers News



49ers rookie RBs Jordan Mason and Ty Davis-Price to get opportunities vs. Dolphins

By David Bonilla
Dec 2

The San Francisco 49ers running back depth chart took a hit on Sunday against the New Orleans Saints. Elijah Mitchell exited the game with a knee injury. Later, tests revealed that the second-year player suffered his second MCL sprain of the season and would miss six to eight weeks. Then Christian McCaffrey exited late in the game, dealing with some knee irritation. He is expected to be suited up this weekend against the Miami Dolphins. However, the injury on Sunday left the 49ers to rely on rookie running back Jordan Mason—known to his coaches and teammates as "J.P."—to carry the load and secure the shutout victory. Mason


Featured

More by Brett Pahler

More Articles

Share 49ersWebzone