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NFL San Francisco 49ers

Ranking the San Francisco 49ers’ Draft Picks From Worst to First

Ranking the San Francisco 49ers' 2014 Draft Picks From Worst to First

Bruce Ellington
David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

The San Francisco 49ers are making the draft look easy. After yet another impressive job selecting players in 2014, the 49ers have more talent than they probably know what to do with. Let's rank each of their picks from worst to first.

12. Keith Reaser, CB, Florida Atlantic (Pick No. 170)

FAU
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

12. Keith Reaser, CB, Florida Atlantic (Pick No. 170)

FAU
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The 49ers had a huge need at cornerback, but didn't address it early. As much as they garnered great value in the early and middle rounds, I can't help but think they might have reached for Keith Reaser to add a corner.

11. Kenneth Acker, CB, Southern Methodist (Pick No. 180)

SMU
Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

11. Kenneth Acker, CB, Southern Methodist (Pick No. 180)

SMU
Thomas Campbell-USA TODAY Sports

Like with Reaser, Kenneth Acker might have been a reach -- the second part of a double-down reach -- to fill the club's void at cornerback. Of course, considering Acker and Reaser are both small-school prospects, perhaps those sentiments are derived more from the unknown factor than value.

10. Trey Milliard, FB, Oklahoma (Pick No. 245)

49ers helmet
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

10. Trey Milliard, FB, Oklahoma (Pick No. 245)

49ers helmet
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Oklahoma's Trey Milliard may have been selected much earlier in the draft if it weren't for an ACL injury he suffered in October. When healthy, Milliard projects as a potential special teams ace in San Francisco.

9. Kaleb Ramsey, DE, Boston College (Pick No. 243)

Kaleb Ramsey
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

9. Kaleb Ramsey, DE, Boston College (Pick No. 243)

Kaleb Ramsey
Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports

Another player who had his stock dropped because of durability concerns, Boston College's Kaleb Ramsey could be a coup late in the draft if he can sustain some durability. He possesses an impressive blend of strength and athleticism.

8. Aaron Lynch, OLB, South Florida (Pick No. 150)

Aaron Lynch
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

8. Aaron Lynch, OLB, South Florida (Pick No. 150)

Aaron Lynch
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Size and athleticism are abundant for South Florida product Aaron Lynch. As a collegiate player, Lynch underwhelmed at South Florida, but flashed a lot of potential during his freshman year at Norte Dame before transferring closer to home. Lynch is a low-risk/high-reward addition as a fifth-round pick.

7. Chris Borland, ILB, Wisconsin (Pick No. 77)

Chris Borland
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

7. Chris Borland, ILB, Wisconsin (Pick No. 77)

Chris Borland
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The nasty knee injury NaVorro Bowman suffered during the NFC Championship has obviously left a temporary vacancy at the inside linebacker spot next to Patrick Willis. Can Chris Borland, a third-round pick, fill it? His effort and instincts suggest he can. His small frame and tiny arms say otherwise.

6. Jimmie Ward, S, Northern Illinois (Pick No. 30)

Jimmie Ward
Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

6. Jimmie Ward, S, Northern Illinois (Pick No. 30)

Jimmie Ward
Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Some have questioned the decision to select safety Jimmie Ward with cornerback Bradley Roby still on the board, but the 49ers rarely settle for anything less than the top player on the board. Ward might not even start as a rookie, but he possesses the talent to be the future of the safety position in San Francisco.

5. Dontae Johnson, CB, North Carolina State (Pick No. 129)

Dontae Johnson
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

5. Dontae Johnson, CB, North Carolina State (Pick No. 129)

Dontae Johnson
Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports

North Carolina State product Dontae Johnson, who can play cornerback or safety with experience at both spots, owns some intriguing athleticism. He's a bit raw, especially at corner, but with development, could emerge as a starting-caliber member of the 49ers' secondary.

4. Carlos Hyde, RB, Ohio State (Pick No. 57)

Carlos Hyde
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

4. Carlos Hyde, RB, Ohio State (Pick No. 57)

Carlos Hyde
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

A classic best-player-available pick, Ohio State's Carlos Hyde joins a relatively crowded backfield in San Francisco, but brings a lot of ability to it. Hyde is a physical runner who projects as Frank Gore's future replacement. If Marcus Lattimore, a fourth-round pick of 2013, returns to form after two nasty knee injuries at the collegiate level, the 49ers should have a dangerous one-two punch at the running back position in 2015.

3. Bruce Ellington, WR, South Carolina (Pick No. 106)

Bruce Ellington
Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

3. Bruce Ellington, WR, South Carolina (Pick No. 106)

Bruce Ellington
Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports

This is another example of the 49ers sticking to their board and nabbing a really talented player. South Carolina wide receiver Bruce Ellington would have been a second or third-round choice in a normal draft class. But the immense talent at receiver in this one pushed him out of Day 2. He's short, but not small. He's tough with impressive athleticism. He runs crisp routes before the catch and like running back after it.

2. Brandon Thomas, OG, Clemson (Pick No. 100)

Brandon Thomas
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

2. Brandon Thomas, OG, Clemson (Pick No. 100)

Brandon Thomas
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Brandon Thomas was the team's most predictable acquisition of the draft. He became a favorite to land in San Francisco after tearing his ACL at a pre-draft workout. The 49ers love to stash talented players with injuries on their roster because those players can typically be had later in the draft and, subsequently, provide great value. As a potential first-round pick before the injury, Thomas gives the 49ers yet another possible steal.

1. Marcus Martin, C, USC (Pick No. 70)

Marcus Martin
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

1. Marcus Martin, C, USC (Pick No. 70)

Marcus Martin
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Center Marcus Martin didn't sustain an injury like Thomas, but he still slipped in the draft for whatever reason. There was some talk beforehand that Martin, who has a lot of upside as a center or guard in the NFL, was going to be a surprise first-round pick. That obviously didn't happen. In the third round, Martin became one of the best values of the entire draft.