Needs: OL, QB, DL, LB, S
The 49ers are a team that has been battling it’s way up from the gutters and is now, officially “mediocre.” With the departure of former number one overall pick Alex Smith, the 49ers should look for a QB in the first round. The 49ers should also look to strengthen their depth at all levels of their defense, particularly in the secondary where they were ranked 20th in the league in passing defense.
Choice #1: Mark Sanchez, QB, USC
Now that Alex Smith is gone, the ‘9ers starting quarterback is… Shaun Hill? Nah, that’s got to change. Mark Sanchez is the second best talent in the draft at the quarterback position and should be available at the number 10 spot. Sanchez had a fantastic, 12 win season, where he threw over 3200 yards, 34 touchdowns, and nabbed a Rose Bowl ring. Many are questioning Sanchez’s experience. I also question if Sanchez’s success was because of the talent that surrounded him. However, Sanchez has one big advantage: up-side. Up-side is what the draft is all about. Look for Sanchez to make the 6 hour drive north to the Bay area this April.
Choice #2 – Malcolm Jenkins, DB, Ohio State
The 49ers have a defense that is rapidly improving. They could use a little help at every level, so they should look for the best talent on defense. Jenkins is the best talent. The 49ers need help at the safety position in particular, I do not know if Jenkins could make the switch, but it certainly would help is value if he could. If not, Jenkins would serve as a solid #3 or #4 cover corner before eventually replacing the 34-year old CB Walt Harris.
Pierce’s Mock Draft So Far…
1. Lions – Matthew Stafford, QB, Georgia
2. Rams – Jason Smith, OL, Baylor
3. Chiefs – Aaron Curry, LB, Wake Forest
4. Seahawks – Michael Crabtree, WR, Texas Tech
5. Browns – Brian Orakpo, DE, Texas
6. Bengals – Eugene Monroe, OL, Virginia
7. Raiders – Jeremy Maclin, WR, Missouri
8. Jaguars – Aaron Maybin, DE, Penn State
9. Packers – B.J. Raji, DT, Boston College
10. 49ers – Mark Sanchez, QB, USC