This week, a couple of reports have indicated the 49ers have been considering a trade to move up to get the No. 1 overall pick in this month’s draft.
Jason Cole of Bleacher Report wrote Monday that, “according to two sources,” the Niners have had “brief conversations” with the Tennessee Titans, who own the No. 1 pick.
San Francisco has the No. 7 pick in the first round and its quarterback situation is murky. Colin Kaepernick remains on the roster – for now – as does Blaine Gabbert. But if the 49ers are determined to rebuild their franchise, they may believe they must bring in a top quarterback prospect. With the No. 1 pick, they could have their choice of Cal’s Jared Goff or North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz, considered the top two passers in the draft.
Niners general manager Trent Baalke has 12 picks in this year’s draft, so he certainly has some chips to use. And the Titans – who already took a quarterback last year in Marcus Mariota – aren’t in the market for another one.
Chase Goodbread of NFL.com this week pegged the 49ers as the most likely of five teams that might trade up with the Titans to get the No. 1 choice (followed by the Browns, Cowboys, Rams and Eagles).
Analyst Bucky Brooks of the NFL Network said that if the 49ers truly are in love with one of the top quarterback prospects, trading up might make sense, if they aren’t keeping Kaepernick and don’t love Gabbert.
“You go and get someone else,” he said. “Is it Gared Goff? Is it Carson Wentz? Whoever you want, when you’re No. 1.”
In many mock drafts, however, the 49ers can stay at No. 7 and still get either Goff or Wentz. The Browns, with the No. 2 pick, are the most likely to take a quarterback, with the Titans, Chargers (No. 3), Cowboys (No. 4), Jaguars (No. 5) and Ravens (No. 6) all having quarterbacks they like.
For the 49ers, with so many holes across the roster, it may not be necessary to sacrifice draft picks to to move all the way up to No. 1.
But, said Daniel Jeremiah of NFL.com, if the 49ers do have their sights set on either Goff or Wentz and believe he can be the foundation for future success, San Francisco is well positioned to move up.
“This is a team with a lot of draft picks, as many as anybody in this draft,” said Jeremiah. “A lot of ammuntion if they so desire to go up and get their guy.”