Draft Picks and UDFAs

Per the rest of this busy sports weekend, here are the newest 49ers, draft and UDFA:

1 (17). Arik Armstead, DL, Oregon
2 (14). Jaquiski Tartt, S, Samford
3 (15). Eli Harold, OLB, Virginia
4 (18). Blake Bell, TE, Oklahoma
4 (27). Mike Davis, RB, South Carolina
4 (33). DeAndre Smelter, WR, Georgia Tech

5 (29). Bradley Pinion, P, Clemson
6 (14). Ian Silberman, OL, Boston College
7 (27). Trenton Brown, OL, Florida
7 (37). Rory Anderson, TE, South Carolina

UDFA picks

Dres Anderson, WR, Utah
Issac Blakeney, WR, Duke
DiAndre Campbell, WR, Washington
Darius Davis, WR, Henderson State
Patrick Miller, OT, Auburn
Marcus Rush, DE, Michigan State
Dylan Thompson, QB, South Carolina
DeAndrew White, WR, Alabama

Not crazy about the first 2 picks, but the hope is that Tomsula can get the most out of Armstead. Eli Harold looks like a solid pick, however I thought we’d go ILB instead of OLB. Bell, Davis, and Smelter all come highly regarded. The rest? Well, we’ll see. Looks like Baalke chose a punter with that extra pick they got from SD. Lee’s getting up there, so I get it, but a 5th round seems high. Tartt is a strange one as we seem to need CBs and we didn’t get any.  I suppose there will be some fallout in the next few weeks as players get released/cut to make the roster.

This is a very important draft for Baalke and the team, and grading it now is a fallacy.  Smelter and Bell are big targets that should help in the red zone. and all those UDFA WRs should at least prove to be interesting to see if any stick.

About unca_chuck

Lifelong SF 49ers, SF Giants, and Golden State Warriors fan
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55 Responses to Draft Picks and UDFAs

  1. Winder says:

    I’m glad that’s fucking over, now lets see what we do. I think we got lots of talent and some players that will come into their own in the future. It’s all about coaching now.

    • NJ49er says:

      Touchè Winder.
      IMO, Baalke Drafts ahead of need.
      Iupati, Cox, Culliver were all known defection candidates a year ago.
      Enter, Brandon Thomas, Marcus Martin, Aker, Reaser etc.
      Trey Millard is an unknown to us as well.

      I see this Draft Class as another installment of roster depth and continued competition for starting jobs.
      How many Rookies step into the starting lineup from Day 1?
      Very few.

  2. NJ49er says:

    Chuck I’m expecting more from Patton and Ellington first and foremost.
    John Morton and/or the Harbaugh Offense didn’t seem to do either of them any justice.

    Hoping that new WR Coach Adam Henry can improve that piece of the roster, along with the anticipated changes Steve Logan/Geep Christ can have on Kaep.

    Reggie Bush and Kendall Hunter need to have more roles in the Screen Game as well.
    Better timing and rhythm with the short passing game improves the odds for Kaep and the OL having more positive yardage plays too.

    For me, the WCO in some capacity is a must.
    Quick hitters, play action, better balance all around.

    • snarkk says:

      Screens, draws, and flat passes to RBs. I may have seen one of each last season. Maybe the Niners can really shoot the moon and have two of each this year…

  3. snarkk says:

    I guess Baalke figures he F’d up picking a WR in round 1, so he’s going the other way and picking them down the chain instead, including a boatload of UDFA WR fodder. I don’t see how the passing game can be any worse under the new staff than the Harbaugh/Roman debacle. I’ll be thrilled if they can just get the play called without having to call time out to avoid the play clock hitting zero…

    • NJ49er says:

      WRs bust at a pretty high rate Snarkk.
      Given the additions of Torrey and Simpson, along with the next to invisible contributions from Patton and Ellington, I’m with you, it can only improve with some more focus on the passing game.
      Kaep needs to see the field better and, the WRs need to be on the same page.
      I’m all in for a change of play designs.
      Hoping we see that improvement with the new regime.

  4. NJ49er says:

    Here’s an interesting story on our newly minted RD5 Punter – Bradley Pinion.
    Can I nickname him 5th Gear now? 😀

    Bradley The 5th RD Pinion Gear perhaps?


  5. NJ49er says:

    And yet some more background info on 5th Gear –

    “Good athlete at 6-5, 229 pounds who has background in basketball and soccer. Strong leg and able to provide adequate hang time (4.1-second average). Shown skill for dropping punts inside 20-yard line, but needs more consistency in directional punting.
    Brings potential as a kickoff man in addition to his punting duties. Left Clemson after his junior season to pursue professional career.

    Pinion left Clemson after his junior season, having served as the punter and kickoff man over the past two seasons. He averaged 44.1 yards per punt (39.2-yard net) over 34 career games.
    Pinion, who was the top-rated high school punter in the nation by 247Sports.com, leaves Clemson seventh in school history in punting average”

    • NJ49er says:

      And, just because 5th Gear has been such the topic of discussion, we’ll forever recall the deal that Baalke made to acquire him in RD5.

      Who’m I’ll give the title 5th Gear™

      He came by way of Baalke and Indy Gentlemen….
      Our Pick 151 returned 5th Gear™ and Trenton ‘The Mountain’ Brown.

      Indianapolis Trades: Selection Choices: Round 5, 2015 (165), Round 7, 2015 (244) from Dallas.

      San Francisco Trades: Selection Choice: Round 5, 2015 (151).

      Colts selected Stanford nose tackle David Parry at No. 151.

      49ers selected Clemson punter Bradley Pinion at No. 165 and Florida offensive guard Trenton Brown at 244.

  6. Nipper says:

    Rebuild or reload? Shows how words can mislead or misinform. Is the glass half full or half empty?Everyone brings their own mindset to this subject of drafting new players. It’s an uneasy and uncertain change in everything 49ers. Even the unis are changing.

    • Lurker John says:

      The unis aren’t changing as much as they are being supplemented, but I catch your drift. I believe they can only wear the jerseys twice next year.

  7. 12th man says:

    Baalke rarely drafts for the current season, maybe a piece or two, but in general he is drafting for the next year or two. If someone shows well in TC/pre-season they have an opportunity of course.

    I have wanted an early round CB for 3 years but no luck, yet that unit has performed well above expectations of the doom and gloom brigade, and me, without star “names”, including after Goldson and Hittner went to pastures meaner. I remember all the handwringing about Hittner yer the replacement went to the probowl.

    No question Baalke is doing a great job of talent evaluation, evidence losing Bowman and Willis yet having enough talent to manage it well.

    He did have a rough year in 2012, but the roster was possibly the deepest in the league that year, so I figure he took a few chances to add something to the mix and just maybe the coaches scheme wasn’t a great fit or maybe he just missed, who knows?

    As was already said, nobody can competently judge any draft class as it happens, it takes 2/3 years to shake out and every thinking person knows that, so give it a rest “TOM”, you’re boring.

    • NJ49er says:

      Well said 12th.
      Many have an agenda to cite personal vendettas, and smear campaigns, to support arguments in favor of keeping Harbaugh.

      While I’m wide open to every opinion on the topic, it seemed to me that there was simply a difference in philosophy, about what needed to be done on the roster or, the schemes employed.

      Harbaugh did a fantastic job of getting the talent on the roster to the next level.
      IMO, the Offense was just never able to overcome the better Defenses in the biggest games.
      When several of the Vets, Staley, Crabtree, and Gore for example, started openly challenging ‘schemes’ in the media, it became pretty apparent that they felt more was needed as well.

      Perhaps we’ll never know whether Baalke pressured Jim for changes to the Offensive approach or, the Staff in general.
      I’ve openly questioned the failures of young WRs to contribute and, we certainly know the failures in the Red Zone were no fluke.

      For me, it was as simple as opposing Defenses having figured out what we were doing most of the time.
      It’s not about the GM failing to provide talent or, the HC refusing to expand the Offense.
      I think it was simply a GM and HC who couldn’t communicate constructively, on how to improve things together.

      IMO, again, both guys have to share the ups and downs, and find ways to overcome the shortfalls.
      I just think the relationship never materialized in a positive, professional manner.

  8. NJ49er says:

    Read today about Baalke’s assessment of the Draft.
    Found it interesting that he claimed TE Rory ‘Busta’ Anderson was the highest rated player on their Board, yet they made him the final selection.

    Conversely, Grigson in Indy made the comment that, his selection of WR Philip Dorsett in RD1, was done because Dorsett was the highest rated player on their Board.

    I find it fascinating how each GM plays the ‘slotting’ game.
    Indy has had plenty of weapons on Offense to give Luck the tools needed to succeed.
    Dorsett will certainly add value but, he’s basically the same guy as T.Y. Hilton.

    Where they’ve failed miserably was on Defense.

    Seems to me, if you’re not stopping your opponent, especially against the running game, you’d seek higher RD selections in your areas of biggest need.
    That selection of Dorsett, was one of the strangest Picks I can recall of the entire weekend.

    Just goes to show, how differently, each GM plays the Board, and assigns value.

  9. NJ49er says:

    Looking over our UDFA signings, the DE we grabbed from MI State, Marcus Rush, looks like an ILB candidate to me.


  10. Lurker John says:

    Regarding Harbaugh, I think it’s simply a case of him wearing out his welcome. Whatever that consisted of, the guy grates on people and it’s becoming apparent, if it wasn’t already, that it was time for him to go. Pissing and moaning about him or Alex Smith or whomever is a pointless exercise. You really have to wonder about people who engage in this type of behavior.

  11. Lurker John says:

    With Stevie and Crabs gone, what I want to know is who starts opposite Anquan at the WR position.

    • rtfirefly says:

      Torrey Smith, but he was only good for 50 yds./game with Flacco, so our #3 could be really important. I’m hoping Ellington fills that as the backup burner.

    • NJ49er says:

      Looking at the UDFA signings in recent days, we’re going VERY heavy with WRs.

      Beyond the shortcomings of Harbaugh/Roman not throwing the ball around too heavily, I’m counting on new WR Coach Adam Henry, to get these WRs more prepared than what I’ve seen from John Morton under Harbaughs’ watch.

      Here’s what’s out there at the moment on our UDFA group –

      Dres Anderson, WR, Utah
      Issac Blakeney, WR, Duke
      DiAndre Campbell, WR, Washington
      Darius Davis, WR, Henderson State
      Patrick Miller, OT, Auburn
      Marcus Rush, DE, Michigan State
      Dylan Thompson, QB, South Carolina
      DeAndrew White, WR, Alabama

  12. robbiedeluca says:

    Hey maybe baalke pucking the first punter in the draft is his statement on how good he thinks our 2015 offense will be

    • NJ49er says:

      Hoping he’s just planning to forego the rigors of Camp 12th.
      Be nice to have him around Armstead as a role model.

      • 12th man says:

        Justin has been an amazing player no doubt. If he comes back that would be great but I really think he needs to be in a rotation IMO.

  13. unca_chuck says:

    I think Justin said as much esrlier this year. We certainly have the bodies, if not the talent.

    • 12th man says:

      Docket is no slouch and we have Tank and Dial, both of them came on last year. D lineman take a year or 2 so I expect something more from them this year. Even without Justin the D line is in decent shape IMO

  14. unca_chuck says:

    My point with Justin is the vet presence aspect. Losing Gore and Willis in that role is pretty big.

    Yeah, Torrey is nominally our #1 right now. At least he’s got speed. My problems with this offense have been noted for years now. Using the play clock for the full 45 seconds wastes precious time every game. Unless we are up big (how many times under Harbaugh? 2?) you need to get the plays off faster to get a rhythm going.

    This allows more plays to your playmakers. Ellington I think is a weapon in waiting. Patton is decent but unutilized. VD? Biiiiig question mark. You have to wonder if some of these guys flourish out from under Harbaugh and his onerous ways. VD is high on that list. Boone as well.

    It may be all smoke and mirrors, but we’ll see.

    • Nipper says:

      At this stage I’ll take smoke and mirrors. It feels so good! And a faster rhythm might be a help.

    • Lurker John says:

      Hell, Chuck, it seems like all the 49er receivers have been underutilized the past few years. Ellington and Patton have gotten nary a chance to show what they can do. Very frustrating for a fan. WR is a position you’d figure a guy could help almost right away, as opposed to a QB or even lineman.

  15. unca_chuck says:

    That’s what she said. A little rhythm could help you, Nip. You look a little tense.

  16. Lurker John says:

    The UDFA’s look promising, but has anyone ever charted how many of these guys actually end up making NFL rosters? I’ve no idea. Flipper’s kid, in particular, looks good to me, but so do a lot of guys who never do squat in the NFL. But 5 wideouts to take a look at could be a potential lottery for the Niners. Anderson hurt a MCL, which is not considered as serious as an ACL. He’s probably not far from being ready to go and is reportedly speedy (4.3-4.5?!). His dad was a stud.

    As for the OL, I seem to remember Marcus Martin being touted as a very promising center coming out of USC. Kilgore will be back. Brandon Thomas was also getting rave reviews last camp. So there’s 3 guys who could add depth and/or starting talent to an important part of the team.

    It’ll all come down to coaching these guys up and scheme and all those happy things, but I’m finding it hard to not be at least a little optimistic here.

  17. unca_chuck says:

    Martin may end up at guard. Looney could very well end up at center. Thomas has been given the green light and is going to guard.

  18. unca_chuck says:

    Martin, and certainly Thomas, is much more mobine, and a better pass blocker than Iupati. If avis is fully back, I think the line will be OK. They were worthless last year due to many factors. The big one being continuity and line calling. Martin was in over his head.

    • Lurker John says:

      Martin was in over his head, which is what you’d expect from a rookie center being thrown to the wolves like that. It’s the toughest position on the line and takes experience to master. I think he’ll be much better this year.

  19. NJ49er says:

    Personally, I’m pulling for Trenton The Mountain to stick.
    Trim him down to 335 and muscle him up and he could be a nightmare to deal with on the OLine.

    The beauty of this time of year is the 90 Man roster.
    Try them all out.
    Competition is what it’s all about.

    Guys like Dahl or Looney will be challenged for the final 53.
    Boone may find himself elsewhere as well.

  20. rtfirefly says:

    Phil, that was just a play on the old WC Fields line which he proposed for his tombstone: “On the whole, I’d rather be in Philadelphia.”

  21. Berger says:

    My biggest question is going to be the same one it is every year, are we going to have a competent play caller? It’s been a while. I’ll believe it when I see it.

  22. NJ49er says:

    Hey Berger, here’s a guy we picked up as an UDFA – Very ‘Funchess-like’ in terms of size.


    WR Issac Blakeney, Duke, 6-6, 225
    Played in 40 career games (18 starts) and registered 98 recepts. for 1,093 yds. and 12 TDs. In 2014, started all 13 games and notched 47 recepts. for 559 yds. and 7 TDs. As a junior, played in all 14 games and recorded 19 recepts. for 244 yds. and 4 TDs. In 2012, appeared in all 13 games and tallied 32 recepts. for 290 yds. and 1 TD. Was a member of Duke’s Track and Field team in the spring of 2014. Lettered two seasons in football at Monroe (NC) HS, helping the team to two state playoff appearances. Earned all-conference and all-county honors, as a senior. Also lettered in track and basketball. In 2010, helped his school win the Division 1A state Basketball championship. Also claimed first place in triple jump and long jump at the 2010 1-A state championship track meet. Born 11/18/92 in Monroe, NC.

  23. unca_chuck says:

    What ever happened to Ramses Barden? Looks like he’s a free agent. . .

  24. Berger says:

    NJ- I’m sorry but it’s been so long since we’ve had a coach with a clue about offense, that I’ll believe it when I see it. Harbaugh made a staunch non believer out of me when it comes to the 49ers understanding offense at any level. And he followed Singletary. Did I mention I’ll believe it when I see it?

  25. Lurker John says:

    You figure, at the very least, that Geep is going to go out of his way to do things differently than the previous administration. If that’s the case, then we’re almost guaranteed to see things like screens, swing passes and other such creative stuff. Last years O was one of the most vanilla I can remember and you know that part of Harbaugh’s departure centered around his unwillingness to either can Roman or try something different offensively.

    Even if they screw it up, seeing something more creative would be refreshing.

    • NJ49er says:

      TOUCHÈ to that idea Lurker John –

      Please just teach Kaep and the WRs some timing, I’m not asking for much.
      Just stop all the QB running, unless it’s absolutely necessary.
      Utilize the WRs and RBs more in the passing game.

    • Winder says:

      Yeah, last years offense literally made me want to throw-up and it kept getting worse as the year went on. If it happens again this year I’m pretty sure all involved will be gone and we’ll just have to try again next year.

  26. Nipper says:

    Yes….. utilize the WRs would be nice!

  27. unca_chuck says:

    The one thing we stopped doing is giving our QB outlets . Check down Charlie notwithstanding, gore used to catch 50-50 balls a year. That number went way down under Harbaugh. Mainly because Gore was blocking.

    Even so they could have used VD on shorter routes at times.

    The passing game for 4 years consisted of digs and outs. No screens, slants, timing passes. And the occasional fade to the FB.

  28. unca_chuck says:

    Grain if salt or no, TMZ says it has a video of Ahmad Brooks banging a passes out woman.

    Hence the Harold draft pick id guess.

  29. unca_chuck says:

    New thread is up.

  30. unca_chuck says:

    Aoki giveth . . .

    Sheesh how do you fuck that up?

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