49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

April 7, 2008
So far, Niners not the hosts with the most

Been on the horn with agents the last few days trying to track down which prospects are making a pre-draft visit to the 49ers. Not a lot of luck. Chris Williams? Nope. Gosder Cherilus? Nada. Jeff Otah? Not thus far. Dre Moore? Cliff Avril? Malcolm Kelly? No. No. No.

chris williams.jpg malcolm.jpg gosder.jpg

What does this mean? Nothing really. The 49ers tend to bring in prospects about whom they have questions. Last year, for instance, Tarell Brown was one of their pre-draft visitors. The 49ers looked at the game film and saw a cornerback with first-day skills. But Brown had had a couple of run-ins with the law and they wanted to talk to him and make sure he had the right attitude.

The 49ers also are Senior Bowl devotees, and they tend to answer a lot of their questions about players by spending a week with them in January. The 49ers already took a close look at guys like Cherilus, Williams, Avril and Moore in Mobile. If you’ll remember, Auburn linebacker Quentin Groves pulled out of the Senior Bowl at the last minute. That’s a big reason why the 49ers will host him in Santa Clara on Friday.

Mike Triplett, my former Bee colleague and current Saints beatwriter for the NO Times-Picayune, recently published his mock draft. I was really looking forward to ripping it apart. As it turns out, it's pretty solid. The only things I might tweak are Darren McFadden dropping a little lower and Brian Brohm dropping at least until the very end of the first round. I really like the Dan Connor-to-Pittsburgh pick. The Steelers need to replace James Farrior, who, after all, was my classmate at UVA. That was a long, long time ago …It’s also interesting that Mike has the Saints picking Keith Rivers. If that happens, the Saints likely will drop out of the Takeo Spikes sweepstakes.

1. Miami Dolphins, Chris Long, DE, Virginia
2. St./Louis Rams, Jake Long, OT, Michigan
3. Atlanta Falcons, Matt Ryan, QB, Boston College
4. Oakland Raiders, Glenn Dorsey, DT, LSU
5. Kansas City Chiefs, Sedrick Ellis, DT, USC
6. New York Jets, Darren McFadden, RB, Arkansas
7. New England Patriots, Vernon Gholston, DE/LB, Ohio State
8. Baltimore Ravens, Leodis McKelvin, CB, Troy
9. Cincinnati Bengals, Derrick Harvey, DE, Florida
10. Saints, Keith Rivers, LB, USC
11. Buffalo Bills, Ryan Clady, OT, Boise State
12. Denver Broncos, Branden Albert, G, Virginia
13. Carolina Panthers, Rashard Mendenhall, RB, Illinois
14. Chicago Bears, Chris Williams, OT, Vanderbilt
15. Detroit Lions, Phillip Merling, DE, Clemson
16. Arizona Cardinals, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, CB, Tennessee State
17. Minnesota Vikings, Brian Brohm, QB, Louisville
18. Houston Texans, Aqib Talib, CB, Kansas
19. Philadelphia Eagles, Jeff Otah, OT, Pittsburgh
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Devin Thomas, WR, Michigan State
21. Washington Redskins, Mike Jenkins, CB, South Florida
22. Dallas Cowboys, DeSean Jackson, WR, California
23. Pittsburgh Steelers, Dan Connor, LB, Penn State
24. Tennessee Titans, Jonathan Stewart, RB Oregon
25. Seattle Seahawks, Malcolm Kelly, WR, Oklahoma
26. Jacksonville Jaguars, Kentwan Balmer, DT, North Carolina
27. San Diego Chargers, Gosder Cherilus, OT, Boston College
28. Dallas Cowboys, Felix Jones, RB, Arkansas
29. San Francisco 49ers, Quentin Groves, LB, Auburn
30. Green Bay Packers, Kenny Phillips, S, Miami
31. New England Patriots, forfeited after Spygate scandal
32. New York Giants, Jerod Mayo, LB, Tennessee

-- Matt Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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