49ers 3 round mock draft

A 49ers 3 round mock draft a week before playoffs

The San Francisco 49ers carry a 9-7 record and stress heading into Week 18. It’s unclear if the 49ers will beat the Los Angeles Rams for the sixth straight time, or if the new-look Rams led by the revenge-seeking Sean McVay will notch a much-needed victory. As widely enunciated, here is the playoff scenario for the 49ers: 

  1. If the 49ers win, they are in the playoffs.
  1. If the Rams win and the Saints win, the 49ers are out of the playoff picture.
  1. If the Rams win, but the Saints lose, the 49ers are in the playoffs.

It’s not clear if the 49ers will be in the playoffs and how competitive they could be in the NFC gauntlet. Nonetheless, they will have to focus past the season and on the offseason at some point. With that said, Kyle Shanahan has another pivotal offseason. The 49ers added their future QB in Trey Lance last offseason, so now they need to figure out what pieces they want around the former NDSU signal-caller moving forward. The most glorious and optimistic aspect of the 2022 offseason isn’t the NFL combine (that most NFL nerds watch), but it is the NFL Draft. So, which direction could the 49ers look to go in the first three rounds? Let’s go under the scope and see what could pique Shanny’s interest.

Round 2: CB – Alontae Taylor – Tennessee (trade back in late 2nd/or early 3)

John Lynch and Shanahan should be pleased with the team’s performance in 2021. They know with ease that the NFC West team is built to win now. If the 49ers can get Lance to adjust a bit more mentally to the pro level and able to hit wide-open WRs that Jimmy G likes to miss in big games, they should see a spark from the offense. On the flip side, the 49ers have been a flag machine in the secondary – notably at the CB position. Jason Verrett went from the most pleasant surprise in 2020 to Jason Verrett in 2021 (one game played).

They should be creative as usual in the 2022 draft. I would love to see them move back and select CB Alontae Taylor. They may be able to obtain a second-round draft pick next season and mid-round draft pick this season. Alontae Taylor was ranked fifth in coverage grade according to PFF in 2021. He has the frame and quickness to cover the likes of OBJ and DeAndre Hopkins well next season. 

Round 3: QB – Bailey Zappe – Western Kentucky 

This selection makes a ton of sense. Bailey Zappe, who threw for 5,977 yards and 62 passing touchdowns in FBS record-breaking fashion, would most likely be an upgrade over a QB2 in free agency like Cam Newton and Ryan Fitzpatrick (assuming Jimmy G is out the door). They would also have a very young profile in Zappe on the QB depth chart. 

Kyle Shanahan once flirted with RG3 and Kirk Cousins on the same roster. Oddly enough, Kirk Cousins was the last QB standing. There is a chance Lance either isn’t the real guy, or Zappe is the better solution in a few years, too. 

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