By Chase Petersen

The NFL Draft is over, and we cannot head into the three-month abyss that is the offseason without looking at what all 262 selections mean for each franchise. Whilst too early to judge just how successful a draft class each team’s was, we can look at how rookies fit within schemes, where they stand on depth charts, and who we can expect to make an impact in 2022. We continue our team by team series with the San Francisco 49ers:

Draft Haul

261Drake JacksonEDGEUSC
393Tyrion Davis-PriceRBLSU
3105Danny GrayWRSMU
4134Spencer BurfordOTUTSA
5172Samuel WomackCBToledo
6187Nick ZakeljOTFordham
6220Kalia DavisIDLUCF
6221Tariq Castro-FieldsCBPenn State
7262Brock PurdyQBIowa State

Day One

Credit: Kyusung Gong/Associated Press

No picks for the Niners on day one as they traded the pick for Trey Lance last season. With the organisation moving on from Jimmy G this year and putting the ball in Lance’s hands, we will find out imminently if the huge trade up to get the former NDSU star was worth it. Considering getting to a Super Bowl and an AFC Championship Game in the last three seasons wasn’t good enough for Garoppolo, there will be high expectations for their new quarterback.

Day Two

Credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Day two started with USC EDGE rusher Drake Jackson. Jackson has the most pure speed edge rushes of anyone in this class. He possesses elite bend with very good explosiveness, however is a skinny defensive lineman who may not have the anchor to be a 3 down player immediately, hence his fall. San Francisco was at their best when they had 6-7 very good pass rushers, and they’re trying to get back to that with this selection. 

The 49ers next pick was LSU RB Tyrion Davis-Price. I watch a lot of LSU and I will say there are super impressive reps from TDP, but I didn’t think there was enough to warrant a top 100 selection. He has good contact balance and could be a productive runner in this system. However, Trey Sermon was a mid round pick last year as well, and barely saw the field last season. Chalk this pick up as a bit of a head-scratcher.

With the final pick of the 3rd round the Niners selected SMU WR Danny Gray – more on him later…

Day Three

The 49ers started their day three with UTSA OL Spencer Buford. He has super long arms and middling athletic testing, so a shot on him in the fourth seems warranted.

In the 5th round the Niners scooped up a CB out of Toledo, Samuel Womack. Womack is undersized, projecting into the nickel, but has loads of burst and very good makeup speed. 

To start the sixth round for SF they selected Fordham OL Nick Zakelj. He has the height of a OT, but his arm length screams a career on the interior. He will need to learn to play with better leverage moving forward:

“Despite being a standout offensive tackle for Fordham, there’s a growing consensus that Nick Zakelj’s best position in the NFL would probably be inside at guard. Despite having good size and adequate length, Zakelj’s lateral movement doesn’t match what he’s capable of vertically, and if he struggled to reach his pass set against speed at the FCS level, he’s damn sure going to struggle doing it in the pro’s. Playing at guard not only mitigates that shortcoming, but allows Zakelj to do what he does best; blow people off the football in the run game, and absorb the pass rush pressure in a more face to face environment. There might be a short development phase if he was to make the transition, but he has the tools necessary to be an early starter at the next level.”
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Later in the sixth round the 49ers selected Kalia Davis, a DT from UCF, and Tariq Castro-Fields, a CB out of Penn St. Fields possesses the perfect size and speed to stick on the outside in the NFL.

San Francisco wrapped up their draft class – and the weeekend – with the final pick in this years draft, anointing former Iowa State quarterback Brock Purdy as this year’s Mr. Irrelevant.

One To Watch: Danny Gray

Gray is a bit slight coming in at sub-190 pounds, but he has the speed and explosion to make up for it. The San Francisco offense is all about getting players in space and letting them work. Gray has the ability to make people miss in the open field and turn a 15 yard throw into a 60 yard touchdown with his 4.33 speed. His amount of speed is something the Niners were lacking on the outside, and if Deebo sticks around, Gray could be the deep threat to open up the underneath for him. 

UDFA Tracker

Jeremiah GemmelLBNorth Carolina
Leon O’NealSTexas A&M
Kevin AtkinsIDLFresno State
Taylor HawkinsSSan Diego State
Qwuantrezz KnightCBUCLA
Taysir MackWRPitt
Tay MartinWROklahoma State
Jordan MasonRBGeorgia Tech
Marcelino McCrary-BallLBIndiana
Segun OlubiLBSan Diego State
Jason PoeOTMercer
Sam SchlueterIOLMinnesota
Garrett WalstonTENorth Carolina
Dohnovon WestIOLArizona State

If any of the players in the 49ers UDFA class makes an impact I believe it will be Arizona St. iOL Dohnovan West. West is a bit light, but best projects to a zone run scheme, and that’s what he landed in. He is also one of the youngest prospects in this class, having just turned 21 on the 19th of May.

Credit: SunDevils.com


In conclusion I think the Niners did a good job finding some potential starters in the later rounds. Danny Gray’s speed will make an instant impact, and Drake Jackson has the potential to make this draft look like a gold mine. They loaded up on the OL late in the draft, so getting a hit or two out of those would only help.

Ultimately, the success of this draft starts and ends with how Trey Lance performs when given his shot. With Garoppolo unable to find a new home the 49ers have him as insurance, and Lance has an experienced veteran breathing down his neck. All in all, whoever the QB for this team ends up being, they have to be happy with the results from draft weekend.



From just outside Kansas City Missouri, Chase has been obsessed with the NFL Draft for as long as he can remember. An avid Minnesota Vikings and Texas Longhorns fan, connect with Chase on Twitter @SportsTalkCenter