I said no more draft talk until after the Combine - but that was before the (very irrelevant) Senior Bowl.
So here I go again.
Any time I mention drafting any other position, I get scolded. So let me get this out of the way first. I understand the need. I was watching last year and I saw what happened. I get it; we need it.
That said - taking linemen in the first round is not the only way to get beef. I digress.
If available with first round pick, draft
Russell Okung - OT - OSU. I can dream.
Trent Williams - OT - Oklahoma. I haven't woken up yet
Later first-round pick possibilities at OT:
Bruce Campbell - OT - Mayrland. Not the guy from Army of Darkness.
Anthony Davis - OT -Rutgers.
The lower tier of first-rounders:
Brandon Carter - OG - Texas Tech. The first non-Tackle to really catch my eye. He also handled probable #1 Pick Suh in 2009.
Bryan Bulaga - OT -Iowa. Still an option late in the first.
2nd round and on:
Mike Johnson - OG - 'Bama. That Heisman didn't block for it's self.
Mike Iupati - OG - Idaho. He's supposed to be good.
Charles Brown - OT - USC. Good Grief.
Jason Fox - OT - Not of comic strip fame
Maurkice Pouncey - C - Florida. Latest Center to catch my eye. Fed snaps to Tebow all year. Also has a twin brother, Mike, who is playing his senior season for the Gators.
Moving on to D-line, in spite of the depth at D-tackle this year, the focus is at pass rusher.
Acceptable first rounders:
Jason Pierre-Paul - DE - South Florida. A prototype.
Carlos Dunlap - DE - Florida. Has excellent size and speed. Could even fall farther as his DUI and attitude are accounted for.
Sergio Kindle - OLB - Texas. Impressive all the way up to and through the BCS Bowl.
Corey Wooten - DE - Northwestern. Just has the right tools.
Down a round, or two, or five:
Greg Hardy - DE - Ole' Miss. His stock is plummeting as his potential value is skyrocketing.
Clifton Geathers - DE - South Carolina. Late round sleeper special. You just can't coach 6'7".
DT Special! In a draft laoded with Tackle talent, one stands out (ok, actually 2 stand out but on of them is Mr. Suh. Digressing further... Late first or early 2nd:
Terrance Cody - NT - 'Bama. Stay tuned for an article dedicated to this guy, or just wikipedia search "William Perry" and see where I'm going with this.
WR: Not a true need as Crabtree is finally a part of the team. Never the less in the second or third round there's this guy:
Jordan Shipley - WR - Texas. Slot receiver, talented athlete, van put the team on his back when it's crunch time. Best part of BCS Bowl to watch was Shipley bringing back the team.
Secondary: Not a need as I see it - and I'll be pissed it Taylor Mays ends up on the team before the second round. Only a couple DBs worth turning your head about, the main first rounder being:
Joe Hayden - CB - Florida. The only true shutdown corner. Has instincts, speed, toughness, and everything else I could ask for in a Corner. I must have drifted off because he won't be available when we pick.
Myron Lewis - CB - Vanderbilt. Big Corner, Projected 5th rounder
Myron Rolle - SS - "one of 32 students in America to be named a Rhodes Scholar - the most prestigious academic honor in all of college academics." Projected 6th rounder.
TE: Am I &%#@* Crazy? Between Vernon and his little buddy, Delanie Walker, I'd say we're good here. But check it out: I like TE's. Vernon is arguably the best athlete on the team and a leader to match now. But I'm looking Jump-ball TE. And why not run 3 or even 4 TE's on occasion. Run / pass situations will not be as obvious. Starting with player who could drop to the second:
Jermain Gresham - TE - Oaklahoma. I even hate Oklahoma, but I know this guy is a legitimate first-y.
Jimmy Graham - TE - The U. I did say "Jump Ball" right? Because that's what I'm seeing with Graham. Projected to go in the 3rd. What a steal.
Anthony McCoy - TE - USC. A little more stock than the custom TE's aforementioned, but he's legit. reasonable late second / early third round pick.
Colin Peck - TE - 'Bama. The skinny on this guy? "To most, Alabama senior tight end Colin Peek is known as the clutch player who had two of the most critical touchdown catches of the season, against Auburn and Florida."
Running Backs - WTF? Yes, I am serious. Gore is the man but here's the thing: Man is mortal. SF would have been a bit closer to playoff contention had they had a solid backup playing against the Vikings. I'm not looking for a Frank Gore, who's more like a perfectly thrown slider. I'm looking change-up. And, I'm also looking for a return man.
First round lightning:
C.J. Spiller - RB - Clemson. As good as it gets this year. Spiller would, however, command first round cash. Let's not play the Crabtree game again.
Late first, to early second round lightning:
Jahvid Best - RB - California. When it some to moves, this guy has great ones, and a schnoz for the end-zone. The knock on him is injury, that last of which was a concussion - sustained on a spectacular TD.
Thunder in the (late second) early third: I'm not talking about guys that will run around you.
Toby Gerhart - RB - Stanford. Intelligent, hardworking, and the boy can run with some punishment.
Thunder you might not want to taunt:
Legarrette Blount - RB - Oregon. Attitude concerns have this young man projected to go in the 6th or later. I'm not worried about attitude problems so much any more after the job Coach Sing did turning Davis from Bust to Bad-ass. And the NFL can be a humbling experience regardless.
And for my grand Finally, QB!!!
I'm not writing off Smith. But I'm not penciling him in as the starter yet either. I'm just throwing name of college QBs who impressed me last year out into the open and saying I wouldn't mind seeing one of them ride the pine, as long as the don't receive first-round Benjamins.
Second round Boy-Wonders:
Tim Tebow - QB- Florida. I wanted to get this one over with as it invites more controversy that I'm looking for here. But he benches ridiculous weight. He tries harder than anyone at the position and he actually might be able to play gimmick rolls right away. If he's available in the mid-second round, the south-paw is an option.
Tony Pike - QB - Cincinnati. Not the typical mobile QB the west coast is accustomed to but he's tall and has a strong and more importantly (being mentioned after Timmy) normal delivery.
Dropping down the latter:
Colt McCoy - QB - Texas. I really liked McCoy - up until the BCS Game. I know shoulder pain on the throwing arm sucks. Been there, done that. But suck it up! The biggest game of his whole college career came to an early close , and though I wan't to believe he couldn't play through the shoulder bump, that only paints him as injury-prone in my eyes. That said, if he's there in the third, grab him.
Is this guy even draftable? or Who?
Kellen Moore - QB - Boise State. I've lost track of how many undefeated seasons this guy has finished. He's also a south-paw, which adds an interesting dynamic. He also is a cautious type - not a lot of interceptions over his college career. He is, however, slow as molasses. Draft-able as 7th round silver, even if he never takes an NFL snap in his life.
They can trade up, they can trade down and they can trade away until next-next year; but if the 49ers play the hand they've delt themselves, that's ok with me too.
Seriously, I'm done until after the NFL Combine.