49ers

Where 49ers stand in 2021 NFL Draft order after Bills loss

49ers

The 49ers missed out on a big opportunity with their 34-24 loss to the Buffalo Bills on "Monday Night Football." 

With a win, the 49ers would have been tied for the seventh and final spot in the NFC playoff picture. But the loss dropped them to 5-7 on the season, and they now are the No. 11 seed in the NFC. San Francisco still is focused on the playoffs, especially with upcoming games against the Washington Football Team and Dallas Cowboys. However, there certainly are more eyes on the 2021 NFL Draft after Monday night's loss.

After their disappointing defeat in their new Arizona home, the 49ers now own the No. 14 pick in next year's draft. They have been floating right around the middle of the draft the past few weeks, and moved up two spots with the loss. This, again, is a bit of a tricky spot. 

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Bills quarterback Josh Allen carved up the 49ers' defense with his legs and his arm. The 49ers' top five cornerbacks are set to be free agents, and Richard Sherman told NBC Sports Bay Area's Matt Maiocco that it isn't looking like he will be returning to San Francisco in 2021. Cornerback easily could be the 49ers' top need in next year's draft. 

 

Behind cornerback, the 49ers have a glaring need of upgrading their interior offensive line. They're rotating players right now and the results haven't been great. There's no doubt this team needs a steady force to man the middle of the line. 

And then, there's the quarterback position.

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Bringing back Jimmy Garoppolo would be an expensive move for the 49ers, who already are in salary-cap hell. The front office easily could decide the best move going forward is having a young QB on a rookie contract. The three quarterbacks -- Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields and Trey Lance -- likely will be off the board at this point, but Mac Jones and Kyle Trask could be available. We've talked for weeks about how Jones seems like a great Kyle Shanahan quarterback. Trask deserves some notice, too. 

The senior has prototypical size at 6-foot-5 and 240 pounds. Along with Jones, he might be the Heisman Trophy favorite at this point. Trask has thrown for 3,243 yards, 38 TDs and only three interceptions while completing 71.4 percent of his passes for the Florida Gators. 

If the 49ers do decide to pick a QB in the first round, their decision could certainly come down to Jones or Trask.