Kyle Shanahan and the rest of his 49ers coaching staff won't have the opportunity of working with edge rusher Josh Allen in the Senior Bowl anymore, but that doesn't matter to ESPN NFL draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr.
In his first mock draft of 2019, Kiper has the 49ers selecting Allen with the No. 2 overall pick. Here's why he believes the former Kentucky Wildcat is the perfect fit for San Francisco:
If you're talking about pure pass-rushing ability, the 6-foot-7, 230-pound Allen is right up there with [Nick] Bosa.
The 49ers selected defensive linemen in three straight years from 2015 to 2017 -- Arik Armstead, DeForest Buckner and Solomon Thomas -- but none of those players get after the quarterback like Allen, who can play outside linebacker as well.
As a senior, Allen had 17 sacks, including three in a dominant bowl game performance against Penn State.
In the 2018 regular season, the 49ers ranked 15th in the NFL with 37 sacks, but 12 of those came from Buckner.
Allen was a consensus All-America selection, as well as the SEC’s Defensive Player of the Year, Chuck Bednarik Award winner, and Bronko Nagurski Award winner. He was also chosen as the winner of the Ronnie Lott IMPACT Trophy, which takes into account on-field and off-field excellence.
Whatever mystery there was surrounding George Kittle's health status for the 49ers' Week 11 game against the Cardinals has now been solved.
ESPN's Adam Schefter reported late Saturday night that San Francisco's All-Pro tight end will not play Sunday against Arizona, citing a source.
The aforementioned mystery was some of the 49ers' own doing. After Kittle was listed as day-to-day at the beginning of the week, San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan told Cardinals reporters on Thursday that Kittle would not play Sunday, only to have the organization walk those comments back hours later.
Kittle sat out the 49ers' Week 10 loss to the Seahawks. He originally was injured on San Francisco's first offensive play in the Week 9 win in Arizona, but still managed to catch six passes for 79 yards and a touchdown in that 28-25 victory. Kittle leads all 49ers' pass-catchers in receptions (46), receiving yards (541), yards after the catch (300) and first downs (28).
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Ross Dwelley is expected to start in Kittle's place at tight end against the Cardinals on Sunday. While Shanahan and the 49ers have confidence in Dwelley, there's no question San Francisco's offense will be negatively impacted by Kittle's absence.
Everything hasn't been coming up roses for the 49ers in the last week thanks to some injuries and an overtime loss to the Seattle Seahawks.
The team will face the Cardinals for the second time in three weeks in Week 11. After failing to sack Arizona quarterback Kyler Murray in the first meeting, Nick Bosa will try to do better the second time around.
Murray has been sacked 31 times, which ranks as the third-most in the league. San Francisco, on the other hand, ranks second in the NFL in total sacks (35) and yards allowed per game (251.6).
Here is how NFL writers across the league see the 49ers-Cardinals game shaking out:
Caesars: SF -480
Consensus: SF -500
Westgate: SF -550
Wynn: SF -550
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Josh Weinfuss, ESPN: 49ers 31, Cardinals 20
Nick Wagoner, ESPN: 49ers 27, Cardinals 17
Michael David Smith, PFT: 49ers 16, Cardinals 13
Michael Florio, PFT: 49ers 34, Cardinals 21