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2012 NFL Draft: Should the San Francisco 49ers Look to Trade Down?

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 28:  NFL Commissoner Roger Goodell poses for a photo with Aldon Smith, #7 overall pick by the San Francisco 49ers, during the 2011 NFL Draft at Radio City Music Hall on April 28, 2011 in New York City.  (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Chris Trotman/Getty Images
Casey CrailCorrespondent IMarch 19, 2012

After losing out on the Peyton Manning sweepstakes, the San Francisco 49ers must patch things up with Alex Smith to avoid him departing to Miami.

While the 49ers will likely remain relatively quiet during the remainder of the free agency period, the draft is coming up.

San Francisco has adopted the "build through the draft" philosophy and will be looking to continue to add young talent after a successful class highlighted by Aldon Smith and Chris Culliver.

The first round choices are usually the most exciting come draft night, however, the 49ers will not select until 30th overall.

While there will obviously be talent on the board, will there be a player who general manager Trent Baalke feels will be an impact player or will he feel better moving down and adding additional picks?

Free agency has shaken up the draft for many teams, and the Mario Manningham and Randy Moss signings may change the 49ers' draft ideas.

The majority of mock drafts had a wide receiver going to San Francisco, however, adding another receiver early could leave a surplus at the position with Michael Crabtree and Kyle Williams already on the roster.

Another target could be Coby Fleener who would be dynamic lined up with Vernon Davis, however, Delanie Walker has been solid in that role. Though, Walker's health issues and expiring contract could come into play.

The right guard position is also a need after the departure of Adam Snyder to the rival Arizona Cardinals, however, there should be talent available on day two with players like Kelechi Osemele and Kevin Zeitler.

Although there is not an overwhelming amount of holes on the roster, trading down to add picks may be the best option.

In doing so, the 49ers would add talent without having to potentially reach on a position of need such as the interior line.

With the likely addition of both a second and third round pick, Baalke could add a stud lineman to start at guard as well as being able to bring in another receiver or tight end without having to spend a first round selection.

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