49ers Blog and Q&A

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

April 18, 2009
Q&A: Draft only a week away

Question: Matt, looking at the schedule do you think that the niners will be above 500? and which playoff team from 08 can the niners steal a victory from?
Roger, Charlotte

Answer: Looking at the schedule, there are only two games that would make me tremble (if I were a 49ers fan and not the professional and objective journalist I am). They are Indy and Philly. The rest of those games are winnable. I think the 49ers could steal a game from each of the three playoff teams - Arizona, Minnesota, Atlanta - they play in the first five games. Of course, the fans of those teams likely are circling the San Francisco game and penciling in a "W."
- Matt

Question: Hey, I caught the tail end of your radio interview. I agree with you on the 49ers going OT in the 1st round, but what do you see them doing in rounds 2 and 3?
Scott, Elk Grove

Answer: OLB in the second and RB in the third. Or RB in the second and OLB in the third.
- Matt

Question: Matt, great blog dude. I'm sure Sing & Co. will love a nose-crushing run blocker at RT but what if you draft one at No. 10 and have a losing season? Will Singletary get a pass or a pink slip? A lot of coaching talent will be
available next year. If you select Sanchez, that buys you a couple of years at HC even w/ consecutive losing seasons (look up - Nolan, Mike). What do you think? And would Singletary play into these football politics?
Marc, Tempe, AZ

Answer: I hear you, Marc. But the great thing about Singletary is that he doesn't play politics. In fact, he's said he hates that aspect of football. (Man after my own heart). In other words, I don't think self-preservation is his first instinct unlike that other guy you mentioned. He's going to do what he feels is best.
- Matt

Question: I got a very strong flash that Matt Shaughnessy is going to be someone very special, perhaps even great. I can't explain it, (twice I woke up with thoughts that Walt Harris was going to have huge games and he made two INT's each time, so..) Can you tell us about Shaughnessy?
David San Francisco

Answer: Very blue collar - just what Singletary likes. The question is whether he's athletic enough to make the transition to 3-4 linebacker, something a lot of college DE's (See: Moore, Jay) have had trouble doing. If not, he's purely a 4-3 defensive end.
- Matt

Question: Another guy that fits the bill that the 49ers have shown some interest in is Pierre Walters, DE Eastern Illinois. He is a 2 time All-American, 6' 4 1/4" and his weight has been variously reported anywhere from 255 - 269. San Diego has also paid a lot of attention, even using an official visit. He has been moving up boards and is now showing as R 6-7 at NFLDraftScout.com. HE tweaked a hammy on his 40, but did a 32" vert, 10'6 1/2" BJ and 29 lifts.
Bill, Alameda

Answer: Duly noted. Walters was named a second-team All-American as a senior after finishing with 48 tackles, 16.5 for loss, and 4.5 sacks as a defensive end.
- Matt

Question: Rulon Davis did nothing at Cal due to injuries. Kentwan Balmer did nothing that I can think of. Who do you think the best defensive college player is in the draft? What if Knowshawn Marino is available? He is the best back in the draft and since Singletary wants to run...
Gambol, Foster City

Answer: When all is said and done, the best defensive player in the draft ... drum roll, please, ... will be Connor Barwin. Great motor, great athleticism, will end up on a good team (late first rounder). Just hasn't played very long at his position. ... I hear what you're saying about Moreno. But I can't wrap my mind around the 49ers using a first rounder on a running back.
-- Matt

Question: Matt, what is the condition of Ray McDonald's knee? I thought there was a question about his health status & that he injury may be more serious then the organization was letting on.
Mike, Folsom

Answer: Don't know any details about McDonald's knee other than the injury is to the same knee he had trouble with in college and that it's a serious problem. I did see McDonald at the March minicamp. He was walking without crutches and without a limp for what that's worth ...
- Matt

Question: Matt: About Julian Edelman ...I attended College of San Mateo at the time he was a freshman there and saw him play above any other players on the field at any game. He was a dual threat at Kent State, equally scoring as a passer and as a runner. Any more info you could provide about him would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
Rabbit, Millbrae

Answer: You know more about him than I know. I do know that he put up some excellent numbers at his workout and would be a dangerous Wildcat weapon. He's veee-eeery interesting.
- Matt

Question: Come on Matt...Baltimore over San Diego? Baltimore has about three-square blocks you can walk through without getting shot...versus San Diego?
Robert, Honolulu

Answer: East-coast bias. I grew up in Washington at a time when DC had no baseball team. So we would go to Orioles games at Memorial Stadium. Saw some great games and never got shot. (though once we did lose our muffler).
- Matt

Question: Hey Matt. I've never posted on your blog before, but I've been a loyal reader for a couple years. This was truly a fun post to read. I'm from Maine, so I don't matter much over there on the sunny left coast, but I felt compelled to write something 'cause I love this idea. Keep up the great work!
Tiger, Portland, Me

Answer: You definitely matter. My folks have a farmhouse in South Bristol, about 90 minutes away. I keep bugging Maiocco to visit. If we do, will you join us for lobstahs?
- Matt


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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