49ers Clubhouse 

49ers Needs



April, 11 2002

by Rob Baker
Clubhouse Writer and Draft Analyst 


Quarterback

The 49ers need a successor for Jeff Garcia. I doubt that the niners will be looking too hard at the moment until they see just what Tim Rattay can do, but donít be surprised if the niners take an early QB to groom. If anything though, the 49ers will draft a late round QB to battle Gio Carmazzi and Aaron Garcia for the 3rd QB spot. But I wouldnít be betting on either scenario.

Half Back
Kevin Barlow, Garrison Hearst, Paul Smith and Jonas Lewis. Isnít much room for a rookie. An undrafted free agent will most likely be bought in to give Smith and Lewis competition, but they wonít be drafting a HB.

Full Back
Again, wonít be drafting a FB, maybe an undrafted free agent for Terry Jackson, but definitely no draft pick on the backfield.

Tight End
Only a late pick for a third TE, but donít count on it.

Wide Receiver
JJ Stokes may not be around, and Tai Streets hasnít shown too much promise. The 49ers need a consistent WR to go with Terrell Owens, free agency is the most likely destination to find that kind of player, but donít be surprised if the niners take WR on day one. But I definitely think that theyíll be looking for a backup WR, preferably one that will return kicks.

Offensive Tackle
Need depth along the whole offensive line. Look for Terry Donahue to take  prospect that will sit and learn behind Scott Gragg and Derrick Deese . Should be a definite draft pick, but look at day two.

Offensive Guard
With the 49ers now more desperate than ever to get rid of Ray Brown, with Chris Naeole off to Jacksonville and Ron Stoneís asking price looking to be a tad high, the draft may be the place to pick up a new starting OG. But expect the niners to pick up Stone, and a young OG drafted.

Center
With Jeremy Newberry signing and Ben Lynch looking to still be around, not much of a chance of drafting a C.

Defensive End
With the addition of Sean Moran, I doubt the niners would look too hard at a DE. Either Moran or John Engelberger will start with Andre Carter, and Chike Okeafor and Bobby Stetzer backing up, if they do take a DE, it would be in day two.

Defensive Tackle
Now this is a skinny position. With Reggie McGrew expected to be released, Terry Donahue should be looking at about round 4 to pick up depth. What may even be considered is if the 49ers a deadly serious about moving Bryant Young to a DE, a first rounder could be spent on a DT to replace him.

Linebacker
With Alex Lincolnís future still in question, Terry Killens of to the Broncos, and little backing up Julian Peterson, Derek Smith and Jeff Ulbrich, they need competition to push them. 

Cornerback
The niners seem to like Jason Webster as a starter, but Iím not a big fan of seeing him start, but either way, the 49ers need a big time corner to play nickelback, let it be Webster or a draft pick. But the road to success for the 49ers goes through St Louis, and the niners need someone else to help shut down their arsenal of receivers. Definitely one picked on day one.

Safety
With Tony Parrish signing and Zack Bronson re-signing, I doubt theyíd waist a pick here.

Special Teams
Jose Cortez showed that he wasnít an NFL K, Jason Baker wasnít much better than Chad Stanley. But with San Franciscoís history of going to undrafted free agents to fix special teams needs, I donít think this is a problem that Donahue will fix in the draft.


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