2014 DRAFT GUIDE
NFC champion 49ers gear up for draft with 13 picks

By JANIE McCAULEY - AP Sports Writer
    2013-04-22 14:53

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) - With 13 draft picks, Trent Baalke has built quite the board of potential players. A board that is well prepped but could change quickly as the draft unfolds.

The San Francisco 49ers general manager has already fielded his share of calls from teams trying to boost their chances by acquiring some of those selections from the NFC champions.

``It's up to us to turn those 13 picks into quality picks,'' Baalke said. ``Certainly the more darts you have the more balloons you can pop.''

The media-shy Baalke isn't tipping his hand much as to what he might do, though he is always open-minded.

Could San Francisco take a quarterback? Maybe so, maybe not.

How about a safety? Sure.

``You're not going to get a straight answer from me,'' said Baalke, who prefers to let coach Jim Harbaugh serve as the face of the franchise. ``It's possible that we could draft any position. We're not opposed to draft any position. I've always maintained there's good players at every position. It's our job to find them. We treat the seventh round the same way we treat the first round.''

San Francisco, which lost 34-31 to the Baltimore Ravens in the Super Bowl on Feb. 3 in New Orleans, has its first pick at No. 31 Thursday night near the end of the first round.

The 49ers are still looking for the person to fill the huge void left by free safety Dashon Goldson's departure for Tampa Bay at the start of free agency. Perhaps a tight end, too, after Delanie Walker signed with Tennessee. Bolstering the defensive line could be another emphasis.

One player in the potential pool is Stanford tight end Zach Ertz, who attended the 49ers' pro day last week.

``There's a pool of players that I would think that many around the league have similar value on. That pool is large,'' Baalke said. ``Could you get the same player at No. 39 or No. 45 that you're going to get at No. 20? That's certainly a possibility.''

San Francisco also made 13 picks in 1986, helping set up its roster for the next two Super Bowl championships - in 1988 and `89.

From the moment the 49ers lost the Super Bowl in February, players vowed to return and take the next step: winning a sixth championship for the storied franchise.

``There's a lot of variables in this year's draft, probably more so than in any drafts I've been part of,'' Baalke said. ``We've got a pool of players but you don't know if people are going to move up. There's a lot of value in the draft, more so than just top-tier guys. There's a talented pool of players, probably a larger pool but not as many clear-cut guys.''

While this team already has a deep and talented lineup on both sides of the ball after last season's special run, Baalke is thinking beyond 2013 - and if some players picked make an immediate impact this season, that's a bonus.

If Baalke's track record is an example, San Francisco will make the most of its picks.

In his first draft in charge, 2010, Baalke selected right tackle Anthony Davis with the 11th overall pick and left guard Mike Iupati at No. 17 - and each offensive lineman has started every game for a much-improved unit.

That group played a big part in making Colin Kaepernick's transition a seamless one when he took over as quarterback in November from Alex Smith, the 2005 No. 1 overall draft pick who was traded last month to the Kansas City Chiefs following Kaepernick's speedy emergence. Kaepernick was drafted in the second round in 2011.

While Kaepernick is focused on his own offseason training with the teammates he knows, everybody is eager to see how he performs for a full season under center, and how Baalke continues to build a team around him for the long haul starting with this draft.

``We have great players right now, so I'm going to leave that up to the front office,'' Kaepernick said. ``We're just going to work with the players we have right now and make sure that we're ready.''

With the strong-armed, speedy Kaepernick leading the way, the 49ers are counting on remaining a regular contender. They ended a franchise-worst eight-year stretch without a playoff berth or winning record in Harbaugh's first season in 2011 - then topped that by reaching February's Super Bowl.

From Baalke's perspective, working ahead to build a roster for years down the road starts with a draft like this one considering the 49ers have so many options with 13 selections.

``We're in that stage where we're trying to stay ahead of the game from a picks standpoint,'' he said. ``You'd rather not draft to need. You'd rather draft prior to need. The teams that have been successful are not drafting to need on that specific year.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Giovani BernardOct 31 11:12a

Cincinnati Bengals RB Giovani Bernard (hip, shoulder) is unlikely to play in Week 9.

Trent RichardsonOct 31 10:32a

Indianapolis Colts RB Trent Richardson (hamstring) is not on the injury report for Week 9, and should be able to play Monday, Nov. 3.

Rashad JenningsOct 31 10:12a

New York Giants RB Rashad Jennings (knee) is aiming to return for the Week 10 game against the Seattle Seahawks.

Ronnie HillmanOct 31 09:12a

Updating previous reports, Denver Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman (shoulder) is expected to have his normal workload in Week 9, despite his limited practice repetitions.

DeAngelo HallOct 31 08:52a

Washington Redskins CB DeAngelo Hall (Achilles') tore his Achilles' again at home and had surgery to repair it Thursday, Oct. 30.

Ron JohnsonOct 30 08:22p

Seattle Seahawks CB Richard Sherman (back), DE Michael Bennett (toe), C Stephen Schilling (knee), CB Tharold Simon (knee), CB Byron Maxwell (calf), LB Malcolm Smith (groin), DT Jordan Hill [ More ]

Patrick WillisOct 30 07:52p

San Francisco 49res CB Tramaine Brock (toe) and LB Patrick Willis (toe) were limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. S Jimmie Ward (quadriceps) and CB Chris Culliver (hamstring) practiced in full.

Chris MatthewsOct 30 07:42p

The Seattle Seahawks re-signed WR Chris Matthews and TE Brett Brackett to their practice squad Thursday, Oct. 30.

Scott WellsOct 30 07:42p

St. Louis Rams OG Rodger Saffold (shoulder), CB Janoris Jenkins (knee), DT Aaron Donald (shoulder) and S Cody Davis (concussion) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. S Rodney McLeod [ More ]

Luke JoeckelOct 30 07:22p

Jacksonville Jaguars OT Luke Joeckel (concussion) has recovered nicely from the concussion he suffered in Week 8, and he could play in Week 9 against the Cincinnati Bengals. Joeckel [ More ]

Pierre ThomasOct 30 07:22p

New Orleans Saints RBs Khiry Robinson (forearm) and Pierre Thomas (shoulder) are both inactive in Week 9 against the Carolina Panthers Thursday, Oct. 30.

Arian FosterOct 30 07:12p

Houston Texans RB Arian Foster (knee) was limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Johnathan JosephOct 30 07:12p

Houston Texans LBs Brian Cushing (knee), Brooks Reed (groin) and Jeff Tarpinian (knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. RB Alfred Blue (ankle), LB Jadeveon Clowney (knee), CB Johnathan [ More ]

David HawthorneOct 30 07:12p

The New Orleans Saints have declared LB Austin Johnson, LB David Hawthorne, C Jonathan Goodwin, RB Khiry Robinson, WR Nick Toon, RB Pierre Thomas, CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste inactive for Week 9.

Amini SilatoluOct 30 07:12p

The Carolina Panthers have declared OG Amini Silatolu, CB Bene Benwikere, OT Byron Bell, RB Fozzy Whittaker, WR Philly Brown, FS Thomas DeCoud, OG Trai Turner inactive for Week 9.

Justin TuckOct 30 06:42p

Oakland Raiders TE David Ausberry (foot), WR Vincent Brown (hamstring), CB Chimdi Chekwa (hamstring), CB Keith McGill (groin), CB Carlos Rogers (knee) and WR Kenbrell Thompkins (non-injury) did not [ More ]

Anthony CollinsOct 30 06:42p

Tampa Bay Buccaneers OT Anthony Collins (foot) and LB Brandon Magee (knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. C Evan Dietrich-Smith (knee), WR Trindon Holliday (hamstring) and DE Michael Johnson (hand) were limited.

Brian RobisonOct 30 06:32p

Minnesota Vikings DT Shariff Floyd (ankle, knee), TE Chase Ford (foot), CB Jabari Price (hamstring), CB Josh Robinson (ankle) and DE Brian Robison (glute) were limited in practice Thursday, [ More ]

Louis VasquezOct 30 06:22p

Denver Broncos S Quinton Carter (hamstring) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. LB Lamin Barrow (concussion), TE Virgil Green (calf), LB Steven Johnson (ankle) and OG Louis Vasquez (illness) [ More ]

Ronnie HillmanOct 30 06:22p

Denver Broncos RB Ronnie Hillman (shoulder) was limited in practice for the second straight day Thursday, Oct. 30.

Billy WinnOct 30 06:22p

Cleveland Browns WR Rodney Smith (hamstring) and DE Phil Taylor (knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. DE Desmond Bryant (wrist), S Jim Leonhard (ankle), LB Barkevious Mingo (shoulder), [ More ]

Jordan CameronOct 30 06:12p

Cleveland Browns TE Jordan Cameron (concussion) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30.

Chris JohnsonOct 30 06:12p

New York Jets RB Chris Johnson, who carried the ball just three times for seven yards in Week 8, said he's frustrated with his limited role in the offense. [ More ]

Tom CrabtreeOct 30 06:02p

The New Orleans Saints waived TE Tom Crabtree Thursday, Oct. 30.

Patrick PetersonOct 30 05:42p

Arizona Cardinals S Tony Jefferson (head) and TE Troy Niklas (ankle) were limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. DE Calais Campbell (knee), LB Kenny Demens (knee), S Rashad Johnson [ More ]

Cyrus GrayOct 30 05:22p

Kansas City Chiefs CB Jamell Fleming (hamstring) and LB Josh Martin (hamstring, knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. S Eric Berry (ankle) and CB Christopher Owens (knee) were [ More ]

Demario DavisOct 30 05:22p

New York Jets CB Darrin Walls (calf, knee) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. OT Oday Aboushi (shoulder), CB Phillip Adams (groin), LB Antwan Barnes (knee), OG Willie Colon [ More ]

Keenan RobinsonOct 30 05:12p

Washington Redskins S Ryan Clark (ankle, shoulder) and OT Trent Williams (knee) were limited in practice Thursday, Oct. 30. LB Ryan Kerrigan (wrist), LB Trent Murphy (knee), CB Tracy [ More ]

R. Griffin IIIOct 30 05:12p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) practiced in full for the second straight day Thursday, Oct. 30.

R. Griffin IIIOct 30 05:02p

Washington Redskins QB Robert Griffin III (ankle) will start against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 9, barring any setbacks this week in practice, according to head coach Jay Gruden. [ More ]

Mike PounceyOct 30 05:02p

Miami Dolphins OG Daryn Colledge (illness, back) LB Chris McCain (foot) and TE Dion Sims (toe) did not practice Thursday, Oct. 30. OG Nate Garner (neck), LB Koa Misi [ More ]

Andre BranchOct 30 04:42p

Jacksonville Jaguars CB Will Blackmon (finger), DE Andre Branch (groin), DE Chris Clemons (non-injury), LB Geno Hayes (non-injury) and DT Roy Miller (non-injury) didn't practice Thursday, Oct. 30. CB [ More ]

RSS Feeds

NFL News:
 
Player Notes:
 
Forum Posts:
 

© 2014 RealTime Fantasy Sports, Inc.
Email Us  ·  Call Us 636.447.1170  ·  Lost Password
Advertising represented by USA Today Sports Media Group