This is the latest primer in our NFL Draft two-a-days that looks at each team and which potential first-round picks would be a good fit. The draft begins Thursday, May 8.
PICK NO. 30: SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS
Latest NFL stories
2013 record: 12-4
Key offseason acquisitions: SS Antoine Bethea, CB Chris Cook, OT Jonathan Martin.
Key offseason departures: CB Tarell Brown, CB Carlos Rogers, SS Donte Whitner, WR Mario Manningham.
Biggest holes: Cornerback, defensive line, wide receiver.
San Francisco has 11 picks in this draft and its only true hole is cornerback, now that Tarell Brown and Carlos Rogers are gone. By the time they're on the clock, all the top guys will be off the board. The 49ers aren't afraid to move up to get their guy - they did just that last year with safety Eric Reid. Also, the Niners have two second-round picks, so it's not out of the question for one of those to be packaged with the 30th overall pick in a trade up for a top cornerback.
Let's assume they trade up to grab a cornerback. Who they take would likely depend on what they prefer in a cornerback. The most athletic option would be Oklahoma State's Justin Gilbert, the best press-coverage option would be Michigan State's Darqueze Dennard and the best all-around option would be Virginia Tech' Kyle Fuller.
Gilbert clocked a 4.37 40-yard dash at the Combine, tops among cornerbacks, and checks in at 6-foot, 202 pounds. His technique is a bit messy, but he flips his hips well in coverage, has solid hands and can return kicks and punts.
Dennard excels when he can get physical with his receivers at the line of scrimmage. He needs to learn how to avoid pass interference flags at the next level, and he's not the most athletic cornerback in the draft, but he would be a good fit in a tough NFC West.
Fuller has become one of the hotter prospects at cornerback. He's on the lanky side (6-foot, 190 pounds), but he can do pretty much whatever is asked of him, whether it's man coverage, zone, run support or blitzing. He isn't as flashy as Gilbert or as physical as Dennard, but would be a good, well-rounded plug-and-play option.
Of course, the Niners could just stay at 30 and take the best player available. Minnesota defensive tackle Ra'Shede Hageman would be an intriguing option. Hageman has the physical tools that scouts look for in a defensive lineman: 6-6, 310 pounds, 32 reps on the bench press and 34 1/4-inch arm length. He has some impressive moments on film, where he can explode into the backfield and make a play. However, he'll often follow those moments up by disappearing and becoming a non-factor. He's also raw, but with a line as deep as the 49ers have, he'd be afforded the chance to sit and learn.
The Niners also could use another wide receiver. Michael Crabtree is entering a contract season, and Anquan Boldin will be 34 in October. They drafted Louisiana Tech wideout Quinton Patton in the fourth round last year, but he had all of three catches for 34 yards in the regular season. Plus, it wouldn't hurt to have another weapon when you're going up against the Seahawks' Legion of Boom and an underrated Cardinals secondary twice each.
Indiana's Cody Latimer has risen up draft boards in the past month and could be an option. He's a West Coast-style receiver who runs good routes and uses his size to create separation. He can high-point the ball well and has good hands. He's not too fast, however, and lacks the explosive quality of other top receivers in the draft.
Fresno State's Davante Adams is a sleeper pick at 30. The 6-1, 212-pound Adams has drawn a lot of comparisons to Crabtree thanks to his mix of hands, speed, leaping ability and catch radius. He has average height for a wideout, but he's still a red-zone threat because he can high-point the ball extremely well. He's a little on the raw side compared to other receivers in this class, and there are questions about his route tree.
Some Day 2/Day 3 possibilities include Lindenwood CB Pierre Desir, Clemson CB Bashaud Breeland, Utah CB Keith McGill, Clemson WR Martavis Bryant, Penn State WR Allen Robinson and Pitt WR Devin Street.