Each 49ers pick analyzed: Key is to protecting Jimmy G

--- NFLDraftScout.com ---

Having played football at Notre Dame for four years, Mike McGlinchey surely knows all about Joe Montana and The Second Coming.

Both should serve him well in his new home, San Francisco.

Deciding that protecting the face-of-the-franchise quarterback was their No. 1 priority, the 49ers selected the 6-foot-8, 309-pound offensive tackle with their first pick of the 2018 draft, the No. 9 overall selection.

"We felt like both in the short-term and in the long-term at a premium position, particularly when you've just invested in a quarterback ... we decided that if he's there at (No.) 9, he's the guy we're taking," 49ers general manager John Lynch disclosed. "We were going to listen to some offers if McGlinchey wasn't there."

No doubt, the standout with 37 straight starts at Notre Dame wouldn't be a 49er if they hadn't won a coin flip with the rival Oakland Raiders for the ninth pick. Both teams finished 2017 with 5-11 records.

Nothing says you made a good pick like having the team picking behind you, also rumored to like your guy, decide to trade down and pick five spots later, acknowledging there's no one close to your guy at his position.

"God didn't create a bunch of great offensive tackles," Lynch boasted. "We think we found a guy who has an opportunity to be that."

Lynch and 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan insisted McGlinchey would have to compete for a starting job to be quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo's vision-side bodyguard, but no one listening was buying it.

First off, shortly after making the pick, the 49ers traded last year's starting right tackle, Trent Brown, to the New England Patriots, creating an immediate opening for the rookie.

And as for McGlinchey aspiring to play the more highly coveted left tackle position, that shouldn't be an issue, either.

"Joe (Staley) is obviously one of the most accomplished tackles in the NFL and has been for a long time," McGlinchey noted. "He and I played under some similar coaching trees, so he's one of those guys I've studied for a long time on top of admiring him from afar. It's going to be an unbelievable opportunity to play across from Joe and learn from him.

"I studied Joe. I studied how he does things, what techniques he uses to try to put it into my own game. I was able to have that access and know who he was because of the coaches that are at Notre Dame and had coached him before. Like I said, I'm just so, so excited to get to be in the same room as him and get to get around him and learn as much as I can from him in a quick amount of time."

Lynch admitted it was tempting to accept an offer for the No. 9 pick with the many teams interested in grabbing one of the draft's top four quarterbacks.

In the end, he was happy about two things: 1) That he already had his quarterback and didn't have to be among the needy jockeying for position; and 2) That McGlinchey was still available when the 49ers picked.

"We fielded a bunch of calls," Lynch admitted. "There were a lot of calls, but a lot of people hedging, 'Hey, we're going to call you around pick six and if our guy is still there, would you guys be interested in listening?' And you know what we really wanted to do with everyone, we wanted to wait until (the Chicago Bears picked at No. 8), because like I said, if McGlinchey was there, we had decided earlier this week we weren't going to hesitate and we were going to go. And fortunately he was."

A closer look at the 49ers' picks:

Round 1/9 -- Mike McGlinchey, T, 6-8, 309, Notre Dame

The 49ers had a choice: Get Jimmy Garoppolo some help, or help keep him healthy. They chose the latter. McGlinchey serves two purposes: He will keep Garoppolo from seeing any rush for a couple of years on the right side, before protecting his blind side after left tackle Joe Staley retires.

Round 2/44 -- Dante Pettis, WR/KR, 6-1, 186, Washington

Marquise Goodwin began last season as a one-dimensional deep threat who transitioned into a quality route-runner at about the same time Jimmy Garoppolo arrived. So there's room for a speedy guy like Pettis even if Goodwin is on the field. And if there's a transition period, that's fine, because Pettis should be able to help a pedestrian 49ers return game right away.

Round 3/70 -- Fred Warner, OLB, 6-3, 236, Brigham Young

The 49ers might need a middle linebacker if Reuben Foster can't play. With Aaron Lynch no longer around, they could use an outside linebacker even if Foster is on the field. Warner, as his 262 tackles, 6.5 sacks and seven interceptions attest, is versatile enough to fill in wherever needed.

Round 3/95 -- Tarvarious Moore, CB, 6-2, 190, Southern Mississippi

Desperate for help at cornerback like no other position, some projected the 49ers would pursue the likes of Alabama's Minkah Fitzpatrick with their first pick. Just because they waited another 86 picks doesn't mean Moore isn't a potential starter. Remember, even the 49ers' best cornerback, Richard Sherman, is no sure thing coming off an Achilles injury.

Round 4/128 -- Kentavius Street, DE, 6-2, 280, North Carolina State

Taking a page from the Trent Baalke "draft and stash" guide, the 49ers felt comfortable enough in their current roster to use a fourth-round pick on future availability, with Street having torn an ACL in a pre-draft workout. Clearly, this is a team looking to bank assets with 2019 in mind. They retain about $25 million in salary-cap space as well.

Round 5/142 -- D.J. Reed, CB, 5-9, 188, Kansas State

What's the difference between Friday and Saturday at the NFL draft? Apparently, about five inches. Reed is no Tarvarious Moore in terms of size, but that won't stop him from getting a shot in a wide-open 49ers secondary. He was a quality kick returner in college as well, which can only help.

Round 6/184 -- Marcell Harris, S, 6-1, 216, Florida

Well, at least Richard Sherman now has a rehab partner. Like Sherman, Harris blew out his Achilles last season, after having had the type of junior season that caught the attention of the 49ers, who were flush at his position at the time. But they don't have Eric Reid anymore, so the door remains open for Harris ... whenever he's deemed healthy enough to play.

Round 7/223 -- Jullian Taylor, DT, 6-5, 280, Temple

Having focused on get-to-the-quarterback type defensive linemen with first-round picks the last three seasons, the 49ers went for middle-of-the-line beef this year with two tackle selections. At least the competition for jobs there won't be as severe.

Round 7/240 -- Richie James, WR, 5-10, 183, Middle Tennessee

A third flyer on a player with an injury issue. In this case, the injury wasn't as bad (broken collarbone) as the others. His college numbers (2,959 yards, 20 touchdowns) his sophomore and junior years certainly warranted attention before his senior-season mishap.


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