Foster is clearly one of the most talented players in the class. The Butkus Award winner as the top linebacker in the country led the Crimson Tide with 115 tackles this past season, also adding five sacks.
He has outstanding athleticism for his position with the speed necessary to cover sideline to sideline. He also has enough versatility to be successful rushing the passer, dropping into coverage or playing the run. Adding in good instincts to make plays on the ball, he could become a star in the NFL.
ESPN's Todd McShay had high praise for the young player:
Fellow top prospect Jonathan Allen also spoke highly of his teammate:
With solid size (6'0", 229 lbs), Foster has a chance to be a starter from day one and make an immediate impact for his new team.
The biggest question marks surrounding the talented linebacker are due to off-field issues.
"He may slide because of background," a scout told Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. "He's got all kinds of stuff."
One of the most notable problems came when he was sent home from the NFL Scouting Combine due to an argument with a hospital worker, per ESPN's Adam Schefter. However, he sent letters to all 32 teams explaining the misunderstanding. Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported teams came away impressed when he apologized in person.
He also failed his drug test at the combine when his sample was diluted.
Alabama coach Nick Saban has defended his defensive leader, per Ben Kercheval of CBSSports.com, saying: "He's always been a great team guy and really well-liked by his teammates."
The 49ers are hoping Foster can become a cornerstone of the defense in 2017 and for years to come.
With the team's need at linebacker, he could be an immediate starter and among the top tacklers on the roster in 2017.