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

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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.

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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.

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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.

Four 49ers players to watch in Saturday's preseason game vs. Texans

Four 49ers players to watch in Saturday's preseason game vs. Texans

HOUSTON – When the 49ers face the Houston Texans on Saturday night in the second preseason game for both teams, it will represent the final setting of three important days of work in the Lone Star State.

The starters for both teams will play as much as a quarter. It's another opportunity to make favorable impressions after two fruitful joint practices on Wednesday and Thursday.

“We just ran about 150 plays in two days (of practices) in 100-degree heat,” Texans coach Bill O’Brien said. “Most of those guys got probably 50 reps in two days. So that’s just really good work.”

Still, the game under the lights will serve as an important evaluation for both teams. Here are four 49ers to watch...

RB Jeremy McNichols

The 49ers expect to be without their top two running backs until Week 1 of the regular season. Jerick McKinnon is out with a calf strain, while Matt Breida sustained a separated shoulder. That will provide a big opportunity for the other running backs in camp.

McNichols tops the list. He was a fifth-round draft pick of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from Boise State last year. He opted to turn down the Buccaneers' offer of the practice squad to join the 49ers' practice squad. McNichols will get a lot of playing time on Saturday after gaining 15 yards on three carries against the Dallas Cowboys last week. He ran with the starters this week in practice.

McNichols is competing for a roster spot, along with Joe Williams, Raheem Mostert and veteran free-agent pickup Alfred Morris. Although Mostert appears to have an advantage to make the team, based on his play on special teams, the door is open for one of the others to make his mark. McNichols has put himself into position -- based on his running and receiving skills -- to get an extended opportunity to show what he can do.

CB Jimmie Ward

Ward had a short day of practice on Wednesday when he and Texans All-Pro wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins got into a fight and were ejected. Ward should get plenty of playing time as he makes the transition from free safety, where he opened last season as the starter.

Ward will again start at left cornerback in place of Richard Sherman, whom the 49ers are bringing along slow after a hamstring strain. Ward struggled, giving up a touchdown, against the Cowboys last week. He figures to be be tested against Hopkins.

RG Joshua Garnett

Garnett returned to practice this week and appears to be moving well after sitting out two weeks of practices after banging his surgically repaired right knee against a teammate early in training camp.

The onus is on Garnett to prove he has what it takes to earn a starting job. Currently, the 49ers believe they can trust veteran offensive lineman Mike Person. Garnett needs to earn his way into the good graces of the coaching staff. Veteran Jonathan Cooper has also been slow to work his way into the competition, as he is coming back slowly from a knee injury of his own.

LB Fred Warner

The door is open for Warner to open the regular season as the starter with Reuben Foster set to serve a two-game suspension. Warner, a third-round draft pick, has played with a great deal of physicality. He also has the skillset to be a standout in coverage.

Warner did not play in the exhibition opener due to a chest injury. He practiced fully against the Texans this week and should be able to gain the kind of experience in this game that will help him in his quest to be Foster’s fill-in.

How Dwight Clark's idea for 'Letters to 87' caught on with 49ers fans

How Dwight Clark's idea for 'Letters to 87' caught on with 49ers fans

Dwight Clark considered it a shared experience.

He came down with the most improbable, important and well-timed pass reception in 49ers history, but the impact of the play was more than he could have ever imagined.

The story of the NFL would be incomplete without a large section devoted to “The Catch.” But Clark always seemed to feel he was not alone as he leaped and fully extended his 6-foot-4 frame to make a finger-tips grab of Joe Montana’s pass on Jan. 10, 1982.

And, sure enough, the story of many lives would be incomplete without mention of Dwight Clark, too.

“The way he connected with the fans, personally, really brought them together,” Montana said. “Once you met Dwight, it was hard not to like him. His personality was fun, upbeat and jovial -- always.”

Through the years, Clark enjoyed hearing the perspectives and stories of fans -- many of whom had not yet been born when the 49ers beat the Dallas Cowboys in the NFC Championship Game and went on to the organization’s first Super Bowl.

As Clark battled ALS, he made a request during the final interview of his life.

“I’ve often thought if I could get the word out somehow to get the stories, I should put a book together of the stories that these 49ers fans lived through at that moment,” Clark said on The 49ers Insider Podcast on Feb. 27. “Hopefully, long after I’m gone, 49ers fans will still enjoy that play and that year, that team that started it all off.”

The word got out that Clark wished to receive letters from the public, and his fans did not disappoint. The letters poured in. Some were hilarious. Some were emotionally moving. Some recounted the personal experiences of that day. Others described the wide-ranging impact that Clark’s play had on a life, a family.

Each of the letters conveyed a sense of love and appreciation for Clark as a player but, mostly, as an individual.

Clark died on June 4, 2018. Two weeks before that, a group of friends visited him at his ranch in Whitefish, Montana. The group sat around Clark’s bed and read letters to him for nearly two hours.

“Letters to 87,” a documentary that explores Clark’s unique bond with his fans, will premiere on NBC Sports Bay Area on Tuesday, Aug. 21, at approximately 8 p.m. (following Giants Postgame Live).

“He really seemed to understand from a fan’s perspective how it felt, what it was,” former 49ers teammate Keena Turner said. “And he seemed to really want the fans to walk away feeling good about the interaction in the moment.

“He felt a genuine love that came, and he wanted to reciprocate. He wanted the fan to understand that it was a shared feeling.”

The impact of listening to the letters was something Clark carried with him. Former 49ers owner and close friend Edward J. DeBartolo Jr. was not in the room that day, but he heard plenty about it from Clark himself.

“He was thrilled,” DeBartolo said. “Getting the letters made him very, very happy. He was sick, but he was just thrilled to know he wasn’t forgotten.”

Ronnie Lott was among the people in Clark’s bedroom on Sunday, May 20, when the letters were read to Clark.

“When he wanted fans to express their feelings, he was trying to capture the same feeling that he had when he did it and how did they feel?” Lott said. “Were they as excited as he was?

“When fans write their letters, there’s a spirit there. There’s a connection. That connection was something we can take for granted.”