Everyone knows that Trevor Lawrence will be the first pick in the draft, and that Zach Wilson will be the second selection. No one knows that the 49ers will do with the third overall pick.
The league wants to keep it that way, for as long as possible.
Per a league source, the NFL is pressing the 49ers to keep their pick under wraps for as long as possible. The obvious goal is to maximize the TV ratings for the moment when the Commissioner announces San Francisco’s selection.
And that’s fine. The league once again has asked all network partners to not tip the draft picks, in order to preserve the suspense for the moment the Commissioner makes the announcement. Why not instruct one (or more) of the teams to zip it regarding their draft plans?
Taking it a step farther, look for the networks televising the draft to push the mystery narrative as well. And why wouldn’t they? There’s no reason for anyone at ESPN or NFL Network to definitively report what the 49ers will do at No. 3, even if their reporters know.
Does that satisfy the mission to best inform the audience? Nope. Sometimes, however, that doesn’t matter.