49ers

49ers Day 3 2018 NFL Draft Tracker

49ers Day 3 2018 NFL Draft Tracker

49ERS DRAFT PICKS
First round (No. 9): OT Mike McGlinchey, Notre Dame
Second round (No. 44): WR Dante Pettis, Washington
Third round (No. 70): LB Fred Warner, BYU
Third round (No. 95): DB Tarvarius Moore, Southern Mississippi
Fourth round (No. 128): DE Kentavius Street, North Carolina State
Fifth round (No. 142): CB D.J. Reed, Kansas State
Sixth round (No. 184): S Marcell Harris, Florida
Seventh round (No. 223): DT Jullian Taylor, Temple
Seventh round (No. 240): WR Richie James, Middle Tennessee State

* * *

The 49ers enter Day 3 of the 2018 NFL Draft with five picks. Keep track of who they add to their roster right here.

KENTAVIUS STREET
Position: Defensive line
College: North Carolina State
Height: 6-2
Weight: 280
Selection: Fourth round (No. 128 overall)
Scouting report: Street started 34 games over his final three college seasons. As a senior in 2017, he recorded 38 tackles, 6.5 for loss, 3.5 sacks, three pass break-ups, and two fumble recoveries. NFL.com compares Street to 49ers defensive lineman Ronald Blair. He tore his ACL in a pre-draft workout.
​Projected role: This is a redshirt pick for the 49ers, as Street is not being expected to make a contribution as a rookie. The 49ers failed miserably with picks of this nature during Trent Baalke’s time as general manager. Arik Armstead is in the final year of his contract, and the 49ers still have to decide whether to pick up his fifth-year option for the 2019 season.
Quotable
“It never was so much shock and disappointment. I just knew it was another challenge put ahead of me. I knew I was going to be able to overcome it. I’ve been blessed throughout my whole career not to really have injuries and stuff. This is another challenge God has put in front of me, and I’m going to overcome it. . . I’ve conquered bigger things in my life” – Kentavius Street on the ACL injury he sustained in pre-draft workout with the New York Giants (he underwent surgery on April 17).

“As far as an athlete, I feel like I’m a well-balanced guy. I feel like I’m really stout against the run. Violent hands. Low-pad level. Against the pass, I just use my quickness, instincts, and try to time it with the snap. A lot of it is just studying the offensive linemen I play. I feel like that plays a vital role in how I play, just knowing my opponent. The rest will come natural on game day” –Street.

“I feel like he’s a really good player. He’s probably the best offensive tackle I played since I was in college. He’s a well-balanced player. Good hands. Good pad level. He was consistent” – Street on new 49ers teammate Mike McGlinchey, against whom he played in college.

“In these deals, you think short term and you think long term, and you look at your entire roster. One of the areas we came into this draft with was the idea of the big end who plays over the tight end and a three-technique and getting a little bigger. He’s a guy who provides that for us. We really had him, if you took away the injury, a third-round rated guy for us. ” – 49ers general manager John Lynch.

“We’re not trying to make popular picks, we’re trying to make good picks. We were very convicted that this is just that. . . When you find a guy you really like, sometimes you just have to be patient. We’re willing to be patient if it’s worth it and we feel like it’s worth it, in this case” – Lynch.

* * * 

D.J. REED
Position: Cornerback
College: Kansas State
Height: 5-9
Weight: 188
Selection: Fifth round (No. 142 overall)
Scouting report: Known as a hard worker, the Bakersfield native bounced around in his college career. He attended Fresno State and Cerritos College before ending up at Kansas State. Reed led the Big 12 and ranked fifth in college football with 19 passes defended as a junior. He had three interceptions. He repeated as a first-team All-Big 12 pick in 2017 as both a defensive back and return man. He had one touchdown apiece on punt and kickoff returns. In 2016, Reed was named the conference’s Defensive Newcomer of the Year.
Projected role: The 49ers like veteran K’Waun Williams as a nickel back, but Reed will come and see if he can earn a roster spot and role. He can also be a factor in the return game, too, but will have to compete against Dante Pettis and Trent Taylor. This is a draft pick to improve the back end of their roster.
Quotable
“When I got the call and they said, ‘We’re going to draft you; we love your film.’ I’m going to play on the inside, so whatever I can do to help the team win, I’m going to do it” -- D.J. Reed.

“I’m a playmaker, man” -- Reed.

“That’s what I’m talking about D.J.! Sorry, buddy, it’s John Lynch. I just walked in on these (media) guys. I like that. A playmaker!” – 49ers GM John Lynch, interrupting the media’s conference call with Reed.

“I’m a lockdown corner, first and foremost. I don’t get scored on. And I get interceptions. I’m a physical tackler. I create turnovers, which is the main thing. I also do every well in kick returns and punt returns. I feel like I’m the whole package” – Reed.

“He’s a guy we’re extremely excited about. We talk a lot about profiles. He’s not the profile fit, in terms of his height. The interesting thing about him, he’s about 5-9 ½, but he’s got 32-inch arms, so he makes up for that. He can play some nickel and free safety, we think he can hold up at outside corner. He’s done that at K State. He’s another great punt returner. We got a lot of those, and that’s a good thing" -- Lynch.

* * * 

MARCELL HARRIS
Position: Safety
College: Florida
Height: 6-1
Weight: 216
Selection: Sixth round (No. 184 overall)
Scouting report: He missed the entire 2017 season – his fifth year at Florida -- with a torn Achilles sustained before fall camp. He had a breakout season in 2016 with eight starts while appearing in 13 games. He has NFL size and plays with aggressive. He is a hard-hitter in the middle of the field.
Projected role: The 49ers have plenty of time to allow Harris to completely recover, as he does not figure to have much of a chance to break into the defensive rotation as a rookie. The 49ers on Friday signed starting free safety Jaquiski Tartt through the 2020 season. When healthy, Harris could be a big contributor on special teams while eventually working as a box safety.
Quotable
“Emotionally, you kind of get down, honestly, because you plan to have a big season ahead of you. But you stay dedicated to the focus and the game and how you’re going to come back and be better than you were before that even happened” – Marcell Harris on sustaining the torn Achilles (he said he was medically cleared before the NFL Scouting Combine in February.

“At safety, you got to do both. You got to be able to play the run. You got to be able to guard tight ends. It doesn’t matter what it is” –Harris.

“I knew I was the hardest-hitting safety in the SEC. But at the same time, you got to go out and prove it. I went against some of the best guys: Leonard Fournette, (Derrius) Guice, those guys over there at Georgia. You name it. There’s nobody we haven’t gone against – nobody I haven’t stopped. I’m definitely the hardest-hitting safety in the SEC. If you can name one better – one that hits harder – let me know” – Harris.

“He’s a thumper at the safety position, a guy who has a presence on the field, great tracking angles back there, makes his presence felt. He’s coming off an Achilles injury, but we feel is on pace to be ready for training camp” -- Lynch.

We had some slots open at safety, wanted to fill some there and felt Marcell Harris was a guy who fits what we want out of that strong safety position. Safeties, if you’re not a starter you better be a really good special-teams player. He’s a great one” – Lynch.

* * *

JULLIAN TAYLOR
Position: Defensive tackle
College: Temple
Height: 6-5
Weight: 280
Selection: Seventh round (No. 223 overall)
Scouting report: He spent just one season as a full-time player after being limited in 2015 and ’16 due to injuries, including a torn ACL. He ran 4.83 seconds at his pro day with 31 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press. Taylor had his best game against undefeated Central Florida, recording 10 tackles, eight solo, with 4.5 tackles for loss.
Projected role: Taylor will join the competition on the 49ers’ defensive line, where he will compete for a spot on the 53-man roster. Taylor is a good athlete whom the 49ers could look to develop with a role in the practice squad.
Quotable
“One of the goals was to get a little bigger on the D-line at those big end, three-technique positions. He’s a guy who gives you that and also ran a 4.89. So he can move for a big boy and has some suddenness to him. So we liked him for that” – Lynch.

“We’re picking in the seventh round, so there aren’t too many players of his size and his ability at that point. We like that about Jullian, and we didn’t hesitate to make him a Niner” – Lynch.

“We went through a time with D-lineman – where we had some depth last year – but there was time when we had (Leger Douzable) who just came in off the street and he’s our leading play-time guy because he could play inside and outside and did a heck of a job for us. You have to stockpile those kinds of guys” – 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan.  

* * *

RICHIE JAMES
Position: Wide receiver
College: Middle Tennessee State
Height: 5-9
Weight: 176
Selection: Seventh round (No. 240 overall)
Scouting report: He turned pro after a junior season in which he appeared in just five games due to injuries. He missed time with an ankle injury before sustaining a season-ending fractured collarbone. In 31 career games, he caught 244 passes for 3,261 yards and 23 touchdowns. He is also a top-flight return man. After being named first-team All-Conference USA in back-to-back seasons, he entered his junior year on the preseason watch lists for the Biletnikoff and Hornung awards.
Projected role: James faces a difficult chore to win a roster spot. He has some versatility as a wide receiver, as he plays bigger than his size. But his odds of making the 53-man roster will likely depend on how well he establishes himself on special teams.
Quotable
“To bring him in and compete with everyone. He has the capability of doing a number of things. We’ll probably start him out at X (split end) because of his speed and size. I think he can play inside for us, too. He has the speed to run some of the similar routes as Marquise (Goodwin) and to give us some other options behind him. He can run and plays physical, which we think can relate to special teams, which gives him a chance to make the team” – Shanahan.

“He’s just a fearless player. He has a lot of will that shows up on tape, has a little swagger to him” -- Lynch.

Saints' Sean Payton snaps over failed two-point conversion vs. 49ers

Saints' Sean Payton snaps over failed two-point conversion vs. 49ers

Saints coach Sean Payton wasn't in a mood to be second-guessed following his team's last-minute Week 14 loss to the 49ers.

San Francisco ultimately won the thrilling back-and-forth matchup by two measly points -- a game in which New Orleans attempted two two-point conversions.

Both failed.

After Tre'Quan Smith scored on an 18-yard touchdown pass to give New Orleans a 46-45 lead with 53 seconds remaining, quarterback Drew Brees went back to the same well for the two-point conversion attempt, but the pass intended fell incomplete. On the ensuing possession, 49ers tight end George Kittle caught a 39-yard reception on fourth-and-2, eventually setting up a game-winning Robbie Gould 30-yard field goal as time expired.

But after the tough loss, it was the former two-point try, not the latter, that Payton was questioned about -- while shopping for groceries, no less.

"I certainly understand the fans asking questions," Payton said Thursday on his weekly WWL Radio show. "I got the guy at frickin' Whole Foods asking me about the two-point play. I looked at him, the guy in the meat section, and I said, 'Hey, your steaks don't look too good right now. Worry about your frickin' meat.' "

Oh man. What's the over/under on how many "Worry about your frickin' meat" shirts will be at the Superdome when the Saints host the Colts on Monday night?

The play in question occurred midway through the first quarter, after Saints tight end Jared Cook hauled in his second touchdown reception of the contest. The 49ers were assessed a personal foul on the play, and rather than take the yardage on the kickoff, Payton couldn't pass up being so close to the goal line.

On the two-point try, Brees handed the ball off to a motioning Taysom Hill, who promptly was stuffed by multiple San Francisco defenders well short of the end zone. 

"I didn't feel like kicking a touchback, thought about kicking an onside kick," Payton explained. "So on the 1-yard line, I think we're gonna get two points. And then we get the defense misaligned -- obviously it doesn't have any success. And then the game ends, and, 'Why were you going for two?' Because I wanted to. We were on the 1-yard line."

Misaligned, huh? Payton was correct in stating that the 49ers were in an atypical alignment with two safeties on the same side of the field, but according to San Francisco defensive coordinator Robert Saleh, that was intentional.

"We knew it was coming," Saleh said Thursday in response to Payton's claim that one of the safeties accidentally lined up on the wrong side. "I’m not going to say he wasn’t on the right side because of the way we execute certain things and all our different goal-line packages that we have, but that play was a gimme one to me with Taysom Hill where he was aligned. That was a layup in my opinion."

[RELATED: 49ers severely battered, bruised with three regular-season games to go]

The tape sure seems to suggest the 49ers knew what was coming:

The Saints hung 46 points on the 49ers, so clearly, not many of Payton's play-calls were of the layup variety. But the first two-point attempt?

You might say he butchered that one.

George Kittle's strong run-blocking skills for 49ers proved by stat

George Kittle's strong run-blocking skills for 49ers proved by stat

"George Kittle, not really a blocker ... "

We didn't say this, but FS1's Doug Gottlieb sure did. And Gottlieb certainly heard the comments from everyone online essentially saying he didn't know what he was talking about.

But if you still need numbers to back up the 49ers tight end's elite blocking skills, Next Gen Stats has you covered: 

Kittle certainly has a presence -- both in the run and the pass game -- and the numbers show that. 

49ers coach Kyle Shanahan has praised Kittle's run-blocking game before, which only adds to the evidence proving sometimes, it's best to watch Kittle continue in his greatness -- no comments necessary.

[RELATED: Kittle was key success in run game vs. Ravens]

To add to it, Gottlieb's comments came after the 49ers' Week 13 20-17 loss to the Baltimore Ravens, one where the tight end received an overall 72.9 grade from Pro Football Focus and a 78.1 run-blocking grade.

That was Kittle's best run-blocking grade of the season to that point.