49ers Draft Analysis
Published by Michael Garrity
This article will contain a pick-by-pick analysis of the 49ers draft selections in 2020.
Round 1, Pick 14- Javon Kinlaw, DT, South Carolina
For the fifth time in six years, the 49ers use their first pick in the draft on a defensive lineman. Kinlaw was my favorite selection by the 49ers in their draft. San Francisco traded their original pick (No.13) to the Buccaneers, and moved back one spot (No.14). They received a fourth round draft pick, and gave up a seventh rounder in the process. Kinlaw recorded 37 tackles and 6 sacks in his last season at South Carolina. The First-Team All-American will have big shoes to fill, as All-Pro Tackle Deforest Buckner was traded to the Colts this offseason. If you know Kinlaw’s back story, then you know the NFL was a longshot for him. The odds were stacked against him all his life, as he was homeless at the age of ten. Kinlaw is a disruptive and powerful lineman that will make an immediate impact as a rookie. He is fortunate to be coached by one of the best Defensive Line coaches in the NFL, Kris Kocurek. The 49ers organization are lucky to have him, as they could be looking at a potential All-Pro five years down the road.
Round 1, Pick 25- Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State
The Niners traded up six spots to get the best receiver available at the time in Brandon Aiyuk. Aiyuk was a freak at Arizona State, as he recorded 1,192 receiving yards in his senior season. He also recorded eleven YAC on 65 catches in 2019. Aiyuk will fill the place of NFL veteran Emmanuel Sanders, who departed in the offseason to the Saints. With this addition to the San Francisco offense, and second year star Deebo Samuel, Garropolo will have two solid receivers to throw to in the upcoming season. Due to the 49ers trade up for Aiyuk, and other trades involving Dee Ford and Emmanuel Sanders, San Francisco was left with no picks for day two.
Round 5, Pick 153- Colton McKivitz, OT, West Virginia
The 49ers add more depth to the Offensive Line with 6’6”, 306 pound McKivitz. He was a four year starter as a Mountaineer, as he spent three years at RT and one year at LT. The 2019 All-American should be able to compete for a roster spot in training camp. He will most likely be the backup to new 49er Trent Williams, or current starter Mike McGlinchy. McKivitz is an extremely reliable and powerful blocker, as he allowed only one sack last season. San Francisco should be pleased with this pick.
Round 6, Pick 190- Charlie Woerner, TE, Georgia
This was my least favorite pick by the 49ers in this year's draft. If there is one position that the 49ers didn't need to improve on offense, it’s at Tight End. I get the need for a backup Tight End, as depth for every position is important. However, Kittle has a proven track record of staying healthy. He has only missed three games in three seasons in the league. At the end of the day, Woerner will most likely be used in the blocking aspect with his 6’5” frame. He will have to compete with Ross Dwelly for the backup role this season.
Round 7, Pick 217- Jauan Jennings, WR, Tennessee
Jennings racked up 59 receptions for 969 yards and eight touchdowns in his senior season at Tennessee. He was ranked fifth in the SEC in receiving yards and sixth in YPG (74.5). Standing at 6’3”, 205 pounds, Jennings brings a physical presence on the field. With this being said, Jennings lacks speed. His 4.72 40 yard dash was a concern at the combine. Jennings was not put into the best situation when drafted by the 49ers. Their WR room was already crowded as it is, and it didn’t help Jennings’ case that Aiyuk was added in the first round. With Trent Taylor and Jalen Hurd coming back healthy, and returning starters in Kendrick Bourne and Deebo Samuel, Jennings will have a very tough time earning a roster spot this fall.
The 49ers are looking strong heading into the upcoming season. They filled their DT tackle hole with a future star, established a young receiving core with Aiyuk and Samuel, and added depth at TE, OL, and WR. If you look at each category, the 49ers don’t have a weak one. With a stellar Defensive line, solid secondary, improved Offensive line, and young offensive core, this team is in great shape to make a returning run to the Superbowl. Get excited niners fans, this will be a fun season.
Overall grade: B+