Now that the 2016 NFL draft is a little over a month away, rumors are heating up regarding the San Francisco 49ers and their potential selection in the first round. With Chip Kelly as the new head coach, many analysts imagined that Colin Kaepernick would be the perfect fit at quarterback. While Kelly’s praise for Kaepernick has been lukewarm at best, it appears as though the team is ready to move on from their old signal caller. With the No. 7 overall pick in the upcoming draft, the latest mock drafts have the 49ers selecting either California Golden Bears quarterback Jared Goff or North Dakota State Bison quarterback Carson Wentz.
As previously reported by the Inquisitr, Kelly has actually appeared to be higher on Blaine Gabbert than Kaepernick in his press conferences. While Gabbert is a fine backup quarterback, he is not likely the option that Kelly and 49ers fans would want to move forward with as their starting quarterback. Regardless, this year’s quarterback class is not as strong as the 2016 class, which featured Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston, but there are a few solid prospects.
As the Inquisitr noted, Jared Goff has been linked to the 49ers for the past few months. While Goff was originally projected as the top quarterback in the draft, Carson Wentz has been extremely impressive in his recent workouts. With the Cleveland Browns in need of a starting quarterback, many analysts have Wentz going to the Browns with the No. 2 overall selection.
Regardless of which quarterback the Browns select, either Goff or Wentz will be available for the 49ers at No. 7. As seen on the latest NFL mock draft at CBS Sports, all five of the analysts have the 49ers selecting Goff or Wentz. As seen on the latest NFL mock draft at Sports Illustrated, the 49ers will select Goff.
“Maybe all the recent drama ends with Colin Kaepernick deciding to give Chip Kelly’s offense a try. Put that on the ‘long shots’ list for the moment, though. If Kelly can’t have Kaepernick, allowing him to handpick a new QB should be a priority. Goff’s game needs some refinement, but he is close to NFL-ready with the footwork to succeed in the 49ers’ new scheme.”
While there is still a chance that Kelly and Kaepernick come to an understanding and he is the starting quarterback in 2016, the team could still draft a quarterback in the opening round. Kaepernick has had success in the past, but his flaws are becoming more apparent as the years go on. While Kelly has proven that he can get the most out of a quarterback, he may be looking to groom a young arm that does not have the bad habits that Kaerpernick does.
As Comcast Sportsnet Bay Area reports, Goff is thrilled at the opportunity of being drafted by his favorite childhood NFL team.
“I think it would be great. It would be a really cool thing. Growing up a fan of them, it would be awesome. But at the same time, I’d be more than happy to play anywhere and go to a team and a coach that I want to win games with and be successful with.”
Even if the 49ers select Goff or Wentz in the opening round, there is no guarantee that either of them will be the starting quarterback at the beginning of the season. While it has become common for rookie quarterbacks to immediately become the starters in today’s NFL, Goff and Wentz both reportedly are still going to have to go through a learning curve. Regardless, both remain great prospects that could develop into above average quarterbacks over the next few years.
With the San Francisco 49ers in need of a quarterback, rumors are going to continue to link the team with California Golden Bears quarterback Jared Goff and North Dakota State Bison quarterback Carson Wentz. While the Cleveland Browns are likely to select one of the top quarterbacks, the 49ers should have their pick of the other.
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