Most mock drafts had the San Francisco 49ers taking Stanford defensive end Solomon Thomas at No. 2 overall in the 2017 NFL Draft. Those drafts were wrong, because the 49ers DIDN’T take Thomas … until No. 3 overall, a whole pick later after they traded down with the Chicago Bears.
That’s right, the 49ers took the player most expected, and they did it after earning an extra 2017 third-round pick, 2017 fourth-round pick and a 2018 third-round pick. But they weren’t done there, sneaking back into the first round at No. 31, where they grabbed linebacker Reuben Foster of Alabama. – Niners Nation
Fans usually have two emotions following their teams fist round picks in the NFL Draft: elation or depression. It’s very rare to finish up round 1 and have a level headed opinion of the players your team just got, and that’s why I went with the elated GIF above. Solomon Thomas was the name most scouts and draft analyzers were throwing around for the #2 pick the 49ers were holding onto, but John Lynch and co. threw everyone a curveball at the last second. While they ended up selecting Thomas, they did so at #3 and orchestrated a trade with the Bears that netted them two later round picks this year and a third round pick in 2018. The Bears moved up a spot to grab Mitchell Trubisky and the 49ers took Thomas, but Unpredictable John wasn’t through yet.
Lynch made another trade, this time with division rival Seattle. The 49ers traded the Seahawks the #34 pick in the second plus the #111 pick in the fourth round to move up three spots to #31 in the first round. They selected Alabama LB Reuben Foster with that 31st pick, who could end up being the steal of the draft. While the 49ers still have some holes to fill on offense, I’d rather play with Hoyer/Barkley at QB and Garcon/Goodwin/Kerley/Robinson at WR than trot out a defense that made no upgrades from last year. I’m not expecting magic from a team that finished 2-14 last year, but it’s clear that Lynch and Shanahan have a vision for this team and are doing everything possible to get the right pieces in place. Plus, we left round 1 with one more pick than we had going into the night.
As far as the two picks the 49ers did make, here is how they’re described over on 49ers.com
Round 1: Pick 3 – Solomon Thomas DL, Stanford
Thomas, (6’3, 273) is regarded as one of the top pass-rushers in this year’s draft. This past year, Thomas was named first team All-Pac-12, third team All-American and won the Morris Trophy as the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year. Thomas started all 13 games totaling 62 total tackles, 14 for loss, and 8.5 sacks.
Round 1: Pick 31 – Reuben Foster, LB, Alabama
A unanimous first-team All-American and All-SEC pick. Foster, (6’0, 229) was named Butkis Award winner as the nation’s best linebacker. He was named MVP of the SEC Championship Game against Crimson and finished 2016 with 115 tackles, 13 for losses, and five sacks in 2016.
— InsideBamaRecruiting (@RTRnews) April 28, 2017
Hey Goodell, talk much? You’re reading off a goddamn card. Foster shouldn’t give you that much trouble to say. And if you don’t think I’m starting up a fan club called The Cake Froster’s that dresses up as pastry chefs for every 49ers game then I guess you don’t know me at all.