2011 NFL Draft: A Possible Scenario That Could Address All The 49ers' Needs
The San Francisco 49ers have some holes to fill both offensively and defensively.
The 2011 draft class is pretty solid with tons of talent the 49ers can bring in to help turn things around next season.
Most fans would like to see the franchise quarterback to be found in the first round, however there isn't a first-round talent that fits the Niners' scheme.
Another need would be the cornerback, and in a class that is very strong at the cornerback position, it shouldn't be hard for San Francisco to address this need.
This April should bring lots of new talent to San Francisco, and it's likely that the Niners might live up to the expectations the fans have had—but failed to reach—the last few seasons.
Hopefully new head coach Jim Harbaugh can succeed where Mike Nolan and Mike Singletary have failed.
Round 1: Robert Quinn, DE
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Most fans want Prince Amukamara here, but Robert Quinn is a great defensive end prospect who would likely be off the board if not for previous off-field issues—and the subsequent suspension—at North Carolina.
The need filled by Quinn here is the nonexistent pass rush from 49er defensive ends—as both Justin Smith and Isaac Sopoaga are more defensive tackle than end.
By inserting Quinn opposite Smith, there will be a sack machine on the line.
Smith will still help the Niners' great rush defense that was second in opponents' yards per carry average.
Round 2: Ras-I Dowling, CB
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Ras-I Dowling would be a great value in the second round.
He is likely to be a second rounder due to concerns about his speed, but Dowling still possesses a great skill-set for a corner in this league.
An immediate upgrade over both Nate Clements and Shawntae Spencer, Dowling will revamp the defensive backfield which was ranked a disappointing 26th overall last year.
Trade Back Into Round 2 With Their Third and Fourth-Rounders
The 49ers should trade back into Round 2 and select Pat Devlin from the University of Delaware.
Pat Devlin fits the Harbaugh-quarterback model perfectly—he is very accurate and can run the West Coast offense.
He is not as big as fellow Delaware alum Joe Flacco, and does not have as big an arm either, but Devlin fits the West Coast scheme of a smart, athletic and accurate quarterback.
Devlin will take a year or two to develop behind a veteran, perhaps Donovan McNabb or Marc Bulger.
And after the year or two of grooming, Devlin could be the great franchise player this team has needed since Jeff Garcia's departure.