NFL Draft 2011: San Francisco 49ers Looking at Ricky Stanzi?

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NFL Draft 2011: San Francisco 49ers Looking at Ricky Stanzi?
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Two NFL draft analysts and the premiere 49ers' beat writer believe that Iowa quarterback Ricky Stanzi could be a steal for the 49ers.

Comcast Sports Bay Area's San Francisco 49ers beat writer Matt Maiocco reports that Iowa quarterback Ricky Stanzi could very well be the quarterback that the club selects in Thursday's NFL draft.

In a story at, Maiocco ranked the five quarterbacks who most likely fit the 49ers' West Coast offense.

In order, Maiocco listed Missouri's Blaine Gabbert, Washington's Jake Locker, Florida State's Christian Ponder, TCU's Andy Dalton and, of course, Iowa's Stanzi.

The interest in Stanzi is key, since NFL analysts have him falling into the late second or third round.

So, unlike the top eight quarterbacks, he would likely still be available to the 49ers with their 45th overall pick.

One former NFL scout and a veteran NFL analyst agree with Maiocco's assertion that some of the top QBs in the draft, like Auburn's Cam Newton and Arkansas' Ryan Mallett, simply don't have the tools to fit into San Francisco head coach Jim Harbaugh's West Coast offense.

Former NFL scout Dave Razzano ranked the West Coast QBs as Locker, Ponder, Dalton and Stanzi.

NFL Films' Greg Cosell, who has watched hours of film on each quarterback entering the draft, ranks Stanzi second only to Ponder among quarterbacks that he believes fit the West Coast offense. He has Dalton listed third.

A lengthy look at highlights from Ricky Stanzi's senior season.

Razzano gave a scathing review of Gabbert, calling him a poor fit for the 49ers.

"I don't know what anybody sees in Gabbert," Razzano told Maiocco. "Taking him high in this draft would be a colossal mistake.

Cosell doesn't think Newton would be suited to the San Francisco scheme either.

"The West Coast system is a lot of touch throws to moving receivers...Newton can't make those throws," Cosell said in Maiocco's blog.

However, Cosell, who has studied quarterbacks for NFL Films for years, praised Stanzi.

"Ricky Stanzi played in a pro offense in college," Cosell explained. "I think he's very efficient off play-action, off the boot-action pass game. He...understands checkdowns (and) showed he can handle a lot of responsibility at the line of scrimmage." 

You can contact Ted Sillanpaa at

Matt Maiocco's 49ers blog is updated daily at

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