2014 NFL Draft: 5 Potential First-Round Picks for San Francisco 49ers
5 Candidates for 49ers' 1st Round Pick
Okay, so it has gotten to be about that time of year. Free agency starts in a few weeks and the NFL draft is right around the corner, in May. Now is when all the “experts” and talking heads begin “guessing” whom will pick whom in the upcoming draft. And guessing is all it is. Educated guessing, yes, but guessing nonetheless.
So many different things can happen in free agency and many other areas that can and will affect the draft order. The fact is it is just plain fun to try and prognosticate who your favorite team will pick in the draft. It helps fill an empty space inside football fans, enough to hold us over until the season starts again. So who am I to be any different? I’ll take an early stab at who the San Francisco 49ers may pick with the No. 30 overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Luckily the Niners don’t have the glaring needs on either side of the ball that a lot of other teams face this offseason. They do, however, have some areas where they need to improve or get deeper. They will not be a big player in the free agency market as even with the salary cap increase the 49ers only have around $9-10 million of cap space from which to maneuver. They need another wide receiver, a cornerback, a center and a defensive tackle. These are the four positions San Francisco should address.
The Niners also have 12 draft picks this year, which is more than what they need, so they could trade up from the No. 30 spot to snag a big time player. The choices are aplenty; now let’s see the five players the 49ers should be targeting in the first round.
5. Allen Robinson WR
If the Niners cannot re-sign Anquan Boldin then there will be a need to fill the receiver spot he vacates. San Francisco would have to trade up to get him, but with all those picks, why not?
4. Ra'Shede Hageman DT
Hageman is a physically impressive man at 6-foot-6 and 320 pounds. He can also move, as he ran the 40 in 5.02 seconds at the combine and showed surprising agility during the position drills. He could be Justin Smith’s understudy and future replacement, because Smith is getting long in the tooth.
3. Marcus Roberson CB
This corner out of the University of Florida has good size and speed to go along with an aggressive playing style. Roberson has good hips and transition in man coverage. If Roby is not available, he is the next best option at a need position.
2. Bradley Roby CB
Roby should still be available at the 30th pick. He is a great athlete out of Ohio State who can cover any type of receiver. This seems to be the popular choice amongst the pundits.
1. Justin Gilbert CB
If he is still available, which I doubt he will be, this would be a perfect plug-and-play option for the 49ers, very similar to Eric Reid from last year’s draft. With all the physical receivers the Niners defend, a bump-and-run corner is just what the doctor ordered. That is just what Gilbert is, bringing the size and physical nature the Niners defense is looking for.