• Matt Woolsey

The Draft is Dark and Full of Busts: Why the 2019 Draft is Important for the 49ers Front Office

Image Credit: Andrew Giesemann

When you play the game of draft picks, you build a winning team or your career dies. I have said all offseason this upcoming year is a big year for John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan. 49er fans are not going to want to hear excuses; they will want to see results. This means there is a lot of pressure in the upcoming draft to get it right.

So, what is the worst-case scenario? We are talking about looking over and see the very kid you pushed out of the window 10 years ago waiting for you to arrive. I think it’s difficult to pinpoint one guy and say that he’s bad for the team. Fans were not happy with the Mike McGlinchey pick last year and look how that turned out. I can confidently say that if the Niners draft Kyler Murray with the second-overall pick fans may go full Ned Stark and lose their heads. No one besides creepy three-eyed raven Bran Stark knows how the draft is going to go, but if it goes anything like it did the last time the 49ers had the second-overall pick that would be the worst-case scenario.

If we turn back time to just two years ago, which also happens to be John Lynch’s first draft as the general manager and let us re-live San Francisco’s draft picks for a moment.

Solomon Thomas

I am not ready to give up on Solomon Thomas just yet, I believe the talent is there if he’s given the opportunity to play inside, his natural position. But I am possibly part of a minority here. I am fully onboard with the fact Thomas hasn’t lived up to where he is drafted. Can the 49ers afford to draft someone with the second overall pick who gives them the same output Thomas has given the past two years? Absolutely not. They need someone that can come in and be an immediate impact.

Reuben Foster

God-given talent, terrible choices off the field. Foster’s choice in women is almost as bad as Rob Stark’s. Foster’s rookie season was full of injuries, but the talent was there, and everyone felt the defense could be built around Foster. Then the domestic allegations happened, and the team stuck by Foster but when they happened again the team was very clear with Foster: clean it up or you’re gone. Foster is now a member of the Redskins and won’t be facing a suspension for the 2019 season and the 49ers are left with a wasted first round pick. Rob Stark lost his life over his choice in a woman, Foster may lose his career.

Ahkello Witherspoon

The one thing that makes this pick a little sad is the very next pick was Alvin Kamara. Imagine what Kyle Shanahan can do if he had Alvin Kamara. There definitely has been some shining moments with Ahkello Witherspoon and he could end up being a nice addition, but I am a little bummed knowing Kamara was the very next pick.

C.J. Beathard

About as useful as a prostitute is to Lord Varys. Give me Nick Mullens at least he knows how to bring the elephants.

Joe Williams

We heard about Kyle Shanahan beating the table wanting to draft Williams and here we in 2019 and he’s not even on the team anymore. A fourth-round pick and he was cut before last season even started. Another wasted opportunity.

George Kittle

The Jon Snow from the 2017 NFL draft came in the fifth-round when the 49ers selected George Kittle. But as good as Kittle is and as good as he will be, one man does not make up an entire team and one man cannot do it all.

Trent Taylor

Trent Taylor had nice rookie season but while most receivers make a leap into the second the year, Taylor took a step back. Maybe it was just the injuries, but the 49ers need to address the wide receivers this year and that could push Taylor out of the starting lineup.

D.J. Jones

At this point in D.J. Jones’ short NFL career he has been a depth guy but again that is mostly what sixth-round picks are.

Pita Taumoepenu

Pita Taumoepenu was a sixth-round pick and has spent most of his career buried on the depth chart or on the practice squad. But that’s usually what sixth-round picks are for.

Adrian Colbert

Another player who had a nice rookie season (especially for a seventh-round pick) but took a step back in his sophomore year. Colbert spent half of the 2018 season on injured reserve after suffering a high ankle sprain. We cannot fault Lynch to much for finding a starter in the seventh-round, but he is far from a sure thing.

A Better Draft in 2019

The 49ers need to have a better draft in 2019 than they did in 2017. They had ten draft picks and only a couple have made an impact, some are not even on the team, and others just need to go. The 49ers only have six picks in this year’s draft. It is very important they hit on those six picks, especially the first four where they can find immediate starters that can hopefully have a successful impact for your future.

Like the army of the dead, fans will be storming the gates wanting heads to roll. John Lynch may have no choice but to take the black and head for the wall if this upcoming draft class fails. Winter is coming; John Lynch, hope you have been preparing.

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