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

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Chris MatthewsDec 21 07:32p

The Seattle Seahawks have declared WR Chris Matthews, DL Demarcus Dobbs, WR Kevin Norwood, C Max Unger, OT Russell Okung, TE Tony Moeaki, DL Travian Robertson inactive for Week 16.

Ahmad DixonDec 21 11:52a

The Minnesota Vikings have declared SS Ahmad Dixon, LB Anthony Barr, OT Carter Bykowski, OG Charlie Johnson, TE Kyle Rudolph, CB Shaun Prater, FB Zach Line inactive for Week 16.

Devier PoseyDec 21 11:52a

The Houston Texans have declared WR DeVier Posey, TE Garrett Graham, LB Jason Ankrah, S Josh Aubrey, LB Mike Mohamed, QB Tom Savage, OG Xavier Su'a-Filo inactive for Week 16.

A.J. KleinDec 21 11:52a

The Carolina Panthers have declared LB A.J. Klein, OG Amini Silatolu, CB Carrington Byndom, OT David Foucault, RB DeAngelo Williams, DL Kyle Love, SS Robert Lester inactive for Week 16.

Charles GodfreyDec 21 11:52a

The Atlanta Falcons have declared CB Charles Godfrey, LB James Anderson, OG Jon Asamoah, CB Ricardo Allen, QB Sean Renfree, DL Stansly Maponga, LB Tyler Starr inactive for Week 16.

Jamarca SanfordDec 21 11:52a

The New Orleans Saints have declared SS Jamarca Sanford, DL Lawrence Virgil, LB Moise Fokou, WR Seantavius Jones, CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste, OT Terron Armstead, RB Travaris Cadet inactive for Week 16.

Justin BrownDec 21 11:52a

The Pittsburgh Steelers have declared OG Chris Hubbard, DL Clifton Geathers, CB Ike Taylor, WR Justin Brown, QB Landry Jones, TE Matt Spaeth, SS Troy Polamalu inactive for Week 16.

Clifton GeathersDec 21 11:52a

The Pittsburgh Steelers have declared OG Chris Hubbard, DL Clifton Geathers, CB Ike Taylor, WR Justin Brown, QB Landry Jones, TE Matt Spaeth, SS Troy Polamalu inactive for Week 16.

Carl BradfordDec 21 11:42a

The Green Bay Packers have declared DL Bruce Gaston, LB Carl Bradford, CB Davon House, C Garth Gerhart, WR Jeff Janis, TE Justin Perillo, QB Scott Tolzien inactive for Week 16.

Chris McCainDec 21 11:42a

The Miami Dolphins have declared LB Chris McCain, OT Dallas Thomas, RB Daniel Thomas, CB Don Jones, WR Matt Hazel, OG Nate Garner, WR Rishard Matthews inactive for Week 16.

Arthur BrownDec 21 11:42a

The Baltimore Ravens have declared LB Arthur Brown, DL Casey Walker, CB Chris Greenwood, C Gino Gradkowski, WR Michael Campanaro, OG Ryan Jensen, DL Terrence Cody inactive for Week 16.

Aaron MurrayDec 21 11:42a

The Kansas City Chiefs have declared QB Aaron Murray, RB Charcandrick West, WR Donnie Avery, C Eric Kush, OT Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, CB Marcus Cooper, DL Nick X. Williams inactive for Week 16.

Gary BarnidgeDec 21 11:42a

The Cleveland Browns have declared OT Andrew McDonald, TE Gary Barnidge, RB Glenn Winston, CB Joe Haden, DB K'Waun Williams, WR Rodney Smith, OT Vinston Painter inactive for Week 16.

Chris ConteDec 21 11:42a

The Chicago Bears have declared FS Chris Conte, QB David Fales, OG Kyle Long, PK Robbie Gould, CB Terrance Mitchell, DL Trevor Scott, DL Will Sutton inactive for Week 16.

Dakota DozierDec 21 11:33a

The New York Jets have declared OL Dakota Dozier, SS Jaiquawn Jarrett, QB Matt Simms, FS Rontez Miles, DL T.J. Barnes, WR Walter Powell, OG Wesley Johnson inactive for Week 16.

Alfonzo DennardDec 21 11:33a

The New England Patriots have declared CB Alfonzo Dennard, OG Dan Connolly, RB James White, OT Jordan Devey, WR Julian Edelman, CB Kyle Arrington, RB LeGarrette Blount inactive for Week 16.

Anthony CollinsDec 21 11:32a

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have declared OT Anthony Collins, FB Evan Rodriguez, CB Isaiah Frey, DL Lawrence Sidbury, RB Mike James, WR Robert Herron, WR Solomon Patton inactive for Week 16.

Kelvin BenjaminDec 21 11:22a

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin won't face Cleveland Browns CB Joe Haden (shoulder) Sunday, Dec. 21, who is out with a shoulder injury.

Joe HadenDec 21 11:22a

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Julio JonesDec 21 11:22a

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is active Sunday, Dec. 21.

Jay CutlerDec 21 10:22a

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T Y HiltonDec 21 10:22a

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DeMarco MurrayDec 21 10:12a

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Zach ErtzDec 20 07:42p

Philadelphia Eagles TE Zach Ertz had 15 catches for 115 yards Saturday, Dec. 20. Both of which are career highs.

Philip RiversDec 20 07:22p

San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers (back) is active Saturday, Dec. 20, for Week 16.

Ryan MathewsDec 20 07:22p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) is inactive Saturday, Dec. 20, for Week 16.

Ryan MathewsDec 20 07:12p

The San Diego Chargers have declared LB Cordarro Law, DL Damion Square, CB Greg Ducre, WR Keenan Allen, P Mike Scifres, DL Ryan Carrethers, RB Ryan Mathews inactive for Week 16.

Carlos HydeDec 20 07:12p

San Francisco 49ers RB Carlos Hyde (ankle) is inactive Saturday, Dec. 20.

Ahmad BrooksDec 20 07:02p

The San Francisco 49ers have declared LB Ahmad Brooks, OG Andrew Tiller, RB Carlos Hyde, OG Joe Looney, QB Josh X. Johnson, WR Stevie Johnson, CB Tramaine Brock inactive for Week 16.

DeAndre HopkinsDec 20 06:42p

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins (ankle) will be a game-time decision Sunday, Dec. 21, after not practicing all week.

Julian EdelmanDec 20 06:02p

New England Patriots WR Julian Edelman (concussion) has been ruled out for Week 16. Edelman didn't receive final clearance from the concussion protocol to play Sunday, Dec. 21.

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