After all of the phone calls and emails from friends and family wondering about Aldon Smith and why the Niners took him, I have developed a three word response for any subsequent queries: Think Charles Haley!
While I admit to having a squeamish moment when the Niners were on the clock, the sight of Aldon Smith, and NOT Blaine Gabbert, on his phone, eased my anxiety. I had Smith as the second best pure-pass rusher in the draft behind Von Miller.
While not as fast as Miller, Smith is taller, quicker in change of direction and has extremely long arms, all attributes of great pass rushers. It was definitely a pick of need and if he pans out (I think he will) our defensive backs will get a lot better. I also think my colleague, Mark Naismith, will sleep a little better a night and might not be quite as grumpy.
The Cardinal’s grab of Patrick Peterson (sources have told me he was first on the Niners board) was more of a replacement for Antrel Rolle than as a lifer on the corner. He will switch to safety by year three.
The Rams had to be disappointed in not getting Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones as a toy/target for Sam Bradford, but North Carolina defensive lineman, Robert Quinn, will be part of a stud Ram line for many years to come.
If you think the reaction to Aldon Smith was loud here in the Bay area, did you hear the clap of thunder in the Pacific North West when the Seahawks grabbed Alabama’s offensive tackle James Carpenter with their first pick? Carpenter wasn’t in the top 10 offensive tackles on a majority of the draft sites across the board. He could turn out to be terrific, but the point here is he could have been there much farther down the line.
As for rounds two and three today, here’s hoping the Niners are looking for a quarterback and corner back. With the first pick in the second round, various sources are reporting that the Patriots are listening to offers for the pick, with the thought being someone wants to move up to get quarterback Andy Dalton of TCU. Dalton is my top rated quarterback and it is known that Niner coach, Jim Harbaugh, is high on him. Would the Niners swap #2’s, add one of their #4’s this year and maybe a #2 next year to get that pick and jump ahead of Cincinnati and Arizona? Would YOU do that? If not, the thought here is to go for a DB in round two and a running back in round three. Quarterback T.J. Yates will be there on day two, and don’t forget, Alex Smith is visiting the Niners today, presumably to talk contract?
Enjoy day two!