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2015 NFL mock draft: Malcom Brown to San Francisco 49ers at No. 15

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How will a crazy offseason in San Francisco affect what the 49ers do with the No. 15 overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft? It's hard to say at this point, but NinersNation.com is taking a stab at it here.

Things have been ... ahem ... a tad unsettled this offseason for the San Francisco 49ers. That doesn't really cover how shocking all of the coaching turnover, surprising player retirements, and roster changes have actually been for the recent NFC powerhouse, of course, but you've heard it all by now anyway, and probably read about most of it in-depth courtesy of David Fucillo from Niners Nation.

Speaking of Fooch: he's also here to make a first-round pick for the 49ers in our 2015 NFL mock draft. How does he believe the 49ers will address their new-look list of needs with the No. 15 overall pick? Read on to find out.

15. 49ers: Malcom Brown, DT, Texas

Fucillo: The 49ers first round pick will tell us a lot about how the front office views several positions. The team lost both starting cornerbacks, saw inside linebackers Patrick Willis and Chris Borland both retire, and is swapping in Torrey Smith for Michael Crabtree at wide receiver. However, one position that potentially needs long-term considerations no matter what happens this offseason is defensive line.

Justin Smith has still not announced whether or not he will retire, but even if he sticks around, there are question marks along the defensive line. The team signed Darnell Dockett, has veteran reserve Tony Jerod-Eddie, young up-and-comers Tank Carradine and Quinton Dial, and a pair of strong nose tackles in Glenn Dorsey and Ian Williams. And yet, it is hard to say that any of them are potential clear-cut options for two, three or four years from now.

Brown is a guy who could either move into the starting lineup as a rookie, or if Smith returns, rotate along the line before moving into the starting lineup in year two. Borland’s retirement proves you can never count on a player for anything beyond the current season, but if a guy like Brown sticks around the league, he could be that long-term defensive line option.

Brown has played in both 3-4 and 4-3 formations. The 49ers currently run a 3-4, but whether they stick with that or eventually change to a 4-3, Brown’s versatility would be huge.

Dan Kadar, SBNation.com: If San Francisco decides to target the defensive line in the first round -- and they should if the top wide receivers are gone -- they’ll have options. They could go after a player like Oregon’s Arik Armstead and he’d fit fine as an end in the 3-4. Or they could go with a player like Florida State’s Eddie Goldman who can play inside and out. Brown is another good option. Really, San Francisco would be fine with any of those three players. It will just come down to personal preference. Of those three players, Armstead is the only one who is known to have met with San Francisco. He had a combine interview. He’s also the most natural fit. Still, it’s hard to dislike Brown’s fit considering his athleticism and how active he is when playing hard.

Dan's Top 5 players remaining

  • 13. Eddie Goldman, DT, Florida State
  • 15. Marcus Peters, CB, Washington
  • 17. Dorial Green-Beckham, WR, Oklahoma
  • 19. Eric Kendricks, LB, UCLA
  • 20. Arik Armstead, DE, Oregon

All picks from this mock draft

49ers picks

  • 1-15: Malcom Brown, DT, Texas
  • 2-46: (coming April 13)

The first week of our mock draft is officially in the books! Be sure to tune back in on Monday, when our first round will continue with the No. 16 overall pick, held by the Houston Texans and our friends at Battle Red Blog.

SB Nation presents: What Chris Borland's retirement means for the NFL