Solomon Thomas is a hot name getting pegged to the 49ers and their second-overall pick in the upcoming NFL draft.
The Stanford defensive lineman might be the21 Vontae Davis Youth Jersey
second best prospect available with Myles Garrett expected to go first to Cleveland. But if San Francisco taps Thomas, it wouldn’t be a seamless fit.
That’s because the 49ers used first-round selections in the previous two drafts on defensive linemen Arik Armstead and DeForest Buckner, who were picked to play in the team’s 3-4 front. San Francisco in 2017 is transitioning to a Seahawks-like 4-3 that uses 3-4 personnel, which Armstead and Buckner should excel in.
Thomas played in a 3-4 at Stanford, tasked with disrupting opposing offenses from the interior against guards, much like Armstead and Buckner during their college careers at Oregon. Thomas is redundant, which might not necessarily be a bad thing. Depth is good.
The question becomes, if the 49ers think Thomas is the best pick at No. 2, how does he fit with those other two? And if the fit is questionable, is he Dontrelle Inman Authentic Jersey
skilled enough to transcend it and allow San Francisco to worry about the fit later?
Thomas is a tweener who might not have the length and explosion to consistently pressure the quarterback along the edge. He’s 6-foot-3 and 273 pounds with 33-inch arms, which isn’t prototypical of a pass rusher going against offensive tackle – particularly a pass rusher drafted second overall. San Francisco’s right tackle Trent Brown, for example, has 36-inch arms and would be able to get his hands on Thomas before Thomas could reach Brown.
But Thomas is also some 20 pounds lighter than most interior defensive tackles in a 4-3, which would indicate he’d have to gain to weight to play against the run in base – making it less likely he could rush from the edge. J.J. Watt, for instance, can play all four spots along a defensive line. But he entered the league at 290 pounds in 2011.
Thomas realistically plays the same position as Armstead, which would be as a three- or five-technique along the interior, allowing longer, more natural pass rushers like Aaron Lynch and Ahmad Brooks to play the ‘Leo’ and ‘Sam’ positions on the edges. Buckner figures to be an every-down player if the team added Thomas or not.
The 4-3 over defensive front in base would look similar to the 3-4 front the team has run the better part of the last decade. For now, it would likely look like this:
Leo: Aaron Lynch (Tank Carradine)
DT: Arik Armstead (Solomon Thomas?)
DT: Earl Mitchell (Quinton Dial)
DE: DeForest Buckner
Sam: Ahmad Brooks (Eli Harold)
DE: Lynch (Carradine)
DT: Armstead (Thomas?)
DT: Buckner (Dial)
DE: Brooks (Harold)
Thomas projects to be a three-down player, which http://www.authenticcowboyssale.com/shop-by-players-chaz-green-jersey-c-2_32.html
means the 49ers would have to figure out if Armstead is worth having in a part-time, pass-rushing role, or if he has more value on the trade market to a team that runs his natural 3-4.
New general manager John Lynch ultimately has to build the best roster for the long haul. Drafting for need, and not taking the best player available, can often lead to mistakes. A need is defined as a snapshot in time and could change with an injury during a practice or a free agent addition. Also, a need could always be addressed later in the draft.
Having too many disruptive players along the defensive line is never a bad thing. But the 49ers need help up and down the roster. They have holes at quarterback, free safety, receiver, linebacker, and edge pass rusher, which would be more prudent after the team took Armstead and Buckner the last two years.
San Francisco’s roster isn’t ripe for a luxury pick, like Thomas, to add depth to a position that already has talent. Unless, perhaps, if Armstead is traded.
Like the Rams in recent seasons, there’s long-term risk inhttp://www.authenticcowboysstore.com/shop-by-players-jj-wilcox-jersey-c-2_38.html
investing valuable first-round selections in the same position group. The 49ers shouldn’t neglect other areas on the roster – unless they can ensure Thomas would be an every-down player.