After the draft last year, hopes for the San Francisco 49ers were sky high. Jimmy Garoppolo, acquired late in the 2017 season, finished that year with several good games. Then the season came around.
Running back Jerick McKinnon, a high-priced free agent, tore his ACL in practice. After a 1-1 start, Garoppolo tore his ACL in Week 3 of the regular season. The 49ers lost that Week 3 game, which was the start of losing nine of the next 10.
The 49ers had one of the league’s most inconsistent offenses and worst defenses. San Francisco only intercepted opposing quarterbacks twice all season, and it had an overall turnover differential of minus-25. A promising team with a brilliant offensive mind in head coach Kyle Shanahan was kicked back into the top of the NFL Draft with a 4-12 record.
But if Garoppolo can stay healthy, the 49ers could be a surprise team of 2019. That is, of course, if that talent-bare defense can be improved upon. To help make that happen in the SB Nation NFL writers’ mock draft is Kyle Posey of Niners Nation.
2. San Francisco 49ers: Nick Bosa, Edge Rusher, Ohio State
Posey: This is too easy for the 49ers. The team needed to upgrade its front four during the offseason, and Bosa is the icing on the cake. He isn’t only the best player available, but this the best fit, as well as the best complement to newly acquired Dee Ford. Bosa doesn’t just make one person better, he makes the entire secondary better as well. The Niners struggled to get after the passer last year. Bosa is both a quick and a longterm fix. The defensive line goes from barely mediocre to quite good in a year.
Analysis: It would be hard to find fault in San Francisco taking Bosa, Quinnen Williams of Alabama, or even Josh Allen of Kentucky. We don’t do trades in this mock draft, but moving down might actually be San Francisco’s best course of action on draft night — especially if a team wants to come up for Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins.
But in our scenario, taking Bosa is the best move. He has nearly every trait a team wants in a defensive end. He’s quick off the snap, hustles, has excellent hand use, and plays with enough power. His biggest knock is his injury history. Watching for injuries — not just to Bosa — could be the key storyline to follow for the 49ers this season.
Top five remaining players:
- 2. Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama
- 3. Josh Allen, edge, Kentucky
- 4. Ed Oliver, DT, Houston
- 5. Devin White, LB, LSU
- 6. Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State
The final pick of the day in the SB Nation NFL writers’ mock draft is coming from John B of Gang Green Nation.
What grade do you give the pick of Nick Bosa by the San Francisco 49ers?
This poll is closed