An educated guess at the 49ers’ 2011 draft board

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The NFL draft is exactly one week away, and Matt Maiocco of Comcast SportsNet has taken his best crack at the San Francisco 49ers’ 2011 draft board. Maiocco, perhaps the most clued-in reporter in the Bay Area, constructed a top seven after listening to Niners G.M. Trent Baalke’s Wednesday pre-draft press conference.

The 49ers pick seventh overall.

1. Maiocco has LSU cornerback Patrick Peterson atop the board, noting that the 49ers “need playmakers in their secondary.” Peterson is commonly considered the best player in the draft, so this is believable. There’s a decent chance Peterson will be available at the seventh pick. If so, Maiocco fully expects the Niners to take him.

2. Alabama defensive end Marcell Dareus is next, even though he wouldn’t necessarily satisfy a need position in San Francisco. At 6-foot-4, 318, we do suspect Dareus could play nose tackle in the Niners’ 3-4. Regardless, they’d likely jump at the chance to draft him in the unlikely event Peterson is gone and Dareus is available at No. 7.

3. Texas A&M outside linebacker Von Miller is next. Miller does play a position at which the 49ers have numerous question marks with Manny Lawson and Travis LaBoy headed to free agency, and neither Ahmad Brooks nor Parys Haralson possessing the pass-rush ability Miller demonstrated in the Big 12.

4. Nebraska cornerback Prince Amukamara is fourth, although Maiocco allows that, after the first three prospects, “the next three picks can go in any order.” Still, Maiocco’s placement of Amukamara so high indicates that the 49ers indeed consider cornerback one of their primary needs.

5. The first offensive player on Maiocco’s proposed 49ers board is Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert. The highest rated pocket passer in the draft, Gabbert visited the Niners’ team facility on Wednesday and would fill a longtime hole on offense for San Francisco.

6. North Carolina defensive end Robert Quinn comes in sixth. He’d make the transition from college end to 3-4 outside linebacker in Vic Fangio’s defense.

7. Maiocco doesn’t seem to think the Niners are targeting offense in round one, because his second player on that side of the ball comes in seventh overall. Georgia’s A.J. Green is widely considered the top receiver in the 2011 draft.

Notably left out of the top seven: Cam Newton and Nick Fairley of Auburn, Clemson defensive end Da’Quan Bowers, Cal defensive end Cameron Jordan, Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones, and Washington quarterback Jake Locker.

The 49ers won’t formally construct their draft board until this weekend, but Maiocco’s educated guess is as probably as close as anyone not paid by the organization could get.

20 responses to “An educated guess at the 49ers’ 2011 draft board

  1. An NFL-level offense and AJ Green might make Alex Smith look good.

    Can you imagine trips coming at you courtesy of Davis, Crabtree, and Green?

  2. Maiocco is the man, although there are definitely a few other really good beat guys for the 49ers (definitely not Kevin Lynch though…that guy consistently messes up basic things). I’d have to say I mostly agree with this educated guess, but I wouldn’t be too excited with a Gabbert pick. If those top 3 players on Maiocco’s board I’d really hope they find a trade partner to move back a few spots and still land a potential impact player on the defensive side of the ball.

  3. Like what Maiocco said, but not sure we would pass on A.J. Green, Cam Newton or Julio Jones(physical fast, blocking receiver). These guys up side are tremendous and all could be Pro bowlers caliber players.

  4. Patrick Peterson AND Patrick Willis in the backfield……oh damn!!!….I’m liking our chances!

  5. Jake Locker? Locker couldn’t get a ringer in horseshoes if the stake was sticking out of his ass. Two years of proving he has no accuracy, and you want him picked high in the first round?

  6. I saw the word educated, and then saw it was by Evan, so i knew something had to be wrong. Niners could get very lucky if petersen or miller drops to them…it looks like one of them might if 2 qbs go before them

  7. @brownsfn

    on a team so void of talent as the browns and in need of play-makers… why would they go cornerback two years in a row?

  8. Give it up Niners, AJ Green is going to Cleveland. They need to go with Mallett because Smith isn’t making it.

  9. Maiocco is fantastic as the 49ers beat writer. The guy at PD that followed him – Eric Branch – isn’t bad either.

    Before Maiocco there was Mike Silver. Something about that small town newspaper breeds good football reporters.

  10. Is someone getting money for writing this comment? Then I should get a check also, because I know the board of the Panthers: newton, Peterson, Dareus, gabbert, Quinn. My thinking is stenuous, where is my check?

  11. Been reading Maiocco for years and even though he might be the most clued-in to the organization his mock drafts and previous draft guesses have been clueless.

  12. @ City native: Heckert has stated he likes DBs’ and Many consider P Peterson the Best player in the draft. I dont see a way other than trade down that patrick Peterson makes it past the Browns if he is there at 6

  13. If Peterson is there at #6, Cleveland may take him as the BPA (if A.J. Green is taken by the Bengals) or trade with a team like Houston or Detroit who may want to move up to get Peterson. At #11 or #13, it is likely that Julio Jones would still be on the board (if Jones got by Minnesota or some other team did not trade up), so that is a possibility.

    If the Browns have the opportunity to trade down, it might be in their best interests with so many needs. I know that Green and Jones are extremely talented, but the Browns could likely get a good WR in the later rounds if they feel that Peterson is just too good to pass up.

    On a side note, if Peterson is chosen at #6 (whether by Cleveland or another team trading up), is it a foregone conclusion that his nickname will be “Pick-6”?

  14. Say what you will about the Browns taking another CB, but if you don’t think Joe Haden and PP7 would make for an intimidating secondary, then you just don’t know football.

    Plus if PP7 can do returns Josh Cribbs can focus 100% on being a WR.

    Makes sense to me but I’m a Carolina fan so WTF do I know?

  15. The 49ers draft board is simple (at least for the first round). It falls into a two tier, two player system in order to draft their most pressing needs. At number 7 the first tier consists of Peterson and Miller. If either player is available they will run to the podium to get them. If both players are gone that means one or both of the top 2 qbs are available (Gabbert, Newton) which the 49ers will try their best to trade out of that spot to a team like Washinton (#10) or Minn (#12) who covet a qb in the first round because the 49ers do not. The second tier consists of Prince (I wont even attempt his last name) and Robert Quinn which can be had at the #10 spot or even #12 spot. Both Washington and Minn would be willing to trade being that Tenn (#8) is looking at a qb. I would hope for a slip of the first tier player.

  16. @thefiesty1: Thank you! Mallett would be the pick…if anyone has been paying attention over the last 4 or 5 yrs, they know that Alex Smith is trash and Troy “I backed into the Heisman” Smith is slightly better. Needless to say, they better get someone in there that can sling the rock. Mallett is the only QB in the draft that can stretch the field and help Gore be more productive and he’ll make Crabtree and V Davis that much better too.

  17. First, the 49ers are almost certainly going defense in Round 1. And they’ll probably look to trade down if Dareus, Von Miller or Peterson aren’t there.

    If they don’t get the trade-down in Round 1, they’re probably thinking about working a trade-up from Round 2 to low Round 1. That would be a good spot for a QB in this draft, especially Ponder. (Though I like Stanzi the best of all the likely prospects for low Round 1/high Round 2 selection.)

  18. 9er4life says:
    Apr 23, 2011 3:03 AM
    @thefiesty1: Thank you! Mallett would be the pick…

    lol. Smith was not only a better college QB, but a higher rated prospect in his year than Mallet is now.

    The fact is, Mallet, against good college competition was crappy. Just look at his 2010 results. He just padded his stats against Tennessee Tech, Louisiana-Monroe, UTEP, and Vandy where he threw 14 TDs and 1 INT.

    Against good competition, Alabama, LSU, South Carolina and Ole Miss: 6TDs and 7INTs.

    Bottom-line is, you know nothing about Mallet but rate him highly because some idiot on a draft site said he was a first round prospect. Mallet is classic over-rated guy.

    Just like Joey Harrington, Ken Dorsey, Jake Locker, Ersnt Shazor and a host of other crap guys that either fell or were massively over-drafted despite their lack-luster performances against good college teams.

    Performance, GOOD INDIVIDUAL PERFORMANCE, against top college teams is THE KEY PREDICTOR in NFL success. And Mallet failed this test.

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