The San Francisco 49ers were very active on day two of the NFL draft. There were still a few needs to be fulfilled. Trent Baalke was able to do just that while acquiring an extra pick for 2014. Once again, the draft was played masterfully by the 49ers’ front office.
Initially the 49ers had the 34th pick. They were able to move down six slots (40) and acquire the Tennessee Titans‘ 7th round pick (216) along with their third round pick in 2014. That was a great move by Trent Baalke, especially considering they still got Tank Carradine with the 40th pick.
“There are some questions on his medical. He tore his ACL late in the season, but he is a gifted edge rusher, and like Rich (Eisen) said, all he does is add that edge-rush ability for San Francisco.” — Mike Mayock
Carradine was the player that Baalke said they had made their mind up on prior to the start of day two. He will help fill a need for another pass rusher. Carradine is known for his ability to get off the ball instantly. His best move is a swim move that he will use to get into the backfield quickly. That swim move helped him accumulate 11 sacks and 13 tackles for a loss last season.
Another trademark for Tank is his relentless play. If you watch his games you will see him make his way down the line of scrimmage and make tackles on the opposite side of the field. He will allow the 49ers to employ a bit more of a 4-3 look. Expect Carradine to play primarily at defensive end for the 49ers.
The 49ers next made a deal to move up six slots to pick #55 by giving the Green Bay Packers picks #61 and #173. Vance McDonald was selected with the 55th pick. He will be exactly the kind of joker tight end that was needed to replace Delanie Walker. McDonald did everything from run the ball to play slot receiver at Rice University. He will be a good yards after the catch option on screen passes. However, he dropped a few easy catches because he tried to run without the ball. He will need to simply concentrate more in the NFL. McDonald had 36 receptions in 2012, 28 of them were for first downs. McDonald is familiar with different formations in the pistol offense thanks to his time at Rice. He is comfortable blocking down field and in space. He has no problem finishing his blocks all the way through the whistle.
The need for an edge rusher inspired the 49ers to move up in the third round. Once again, they went to the Packers. This time they got pick #88 in exchange for pick #93 and #216. With the 88th pick the 49ers selected Corey Lemonier. This is the one pick that I had trouble understanding. Quanterus Smith is a guy that would provide a push at a later point. I do have to mention Luke Joeckel gave Lemonier some trouble when they played last season. Most of Lemonier’s pass rush opportunities will come from an up right position. He will be an edge rusher, especially when the 49ers work out of their 3 – 4 defensive set.
The second and third round was said to be a very good couple of rounds for the 49ers. In my opinion, they filled a need for pass rushers both on the defensive line and at outside linebacker. They also got a tight end that will be an adequate replacement for the departed Walker. There is still a need for another wide receiver along with another cornerback. These are two positions that can be filled with the next couple of picks.