49ers Attend Ponder's Pro Day; To Hold Private Workout with Kaepernick Friday

Brandon McClintockCorrespondent IMarch 17, 2011

San Francisco sent national scout Matt Malaspina to watch Ponder's Pro Day workout.
San Francisco sent national scout Matt Malaspina to watch Ponder's Pro Day workout.Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Speculation continues to grow that the 49ers will use their second round draft pick next month to select a quarterback. Earlier this week I outlined several quarterbacks that the 49ers could select in the second round and beyond. It appears that the Niners are now narrowing their search.

Florida State held their Pro Day workout on Wednesday with Christian Ponder taking center stage for NFL scouts to evaluate. Among those in attendance was 49ers national scout Matt Malaspina, increasing speculation that the 49ers could be considering selecting Ponder with their second round draft pick.

Ponder participated only in the throwing drills, completing his throws to ex-49ers receiver Isaac Bruce. With Bruce running routes, Ponder threw short passes, sideline passes, intermediate passes and also deep passes.

Ponder emerged from his drills showing excellent footwork and great arm strength. His stock continues to rise, leaving doubt that he will be available to San Francisco with the 45th overall pick in the second round. Ponder has likely risen into the late first round, still within reach if the Niners are willing to trade one of their later round draft picks.

Seemingly taking this into consideration, the 49ers have also scheduled a private workout on Friday with Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick, ahead of his scheduled Pro Day workout.

Kaepernick interviewed with the 49ers during the NFL combine where he had a strong showing. San Francisco will send general manager Trent Baalke and head coach Jim Harbaugh to Reno to attend the private workout, indicating that San Francisco could be strongly leaning towards taking Kaepernick if he is still on the draft board.

Kaepernick was originally slated as a mid-round selection, but his strong showing in the Senior Bowl followed by his combine performance have propelled on many draft boards to the second round, and possibly even a late first round selection if he has a strong Pro Day workout on Monday, March 22.

Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee recently projected that the Niners may trade up into the late first round to select Kaepernick.

The 49ers also attended the Pro Day workout for TCU's Andy Dalton, showing that they are definitely putting in their time studying second-round quarterback options.