13. San Francisco 49ers – Henry Ruggs III, WR, Alabama
Analysis by Arrowhead Addict contributor Scott Loring
By trading away star defensive tackle DeForest Buckner, the 49ers are in position to solidify a key position on the boundary. Cornerback might be a stronger area of need, but head coach Kyle Shanahan manages to sway GM John Lynch into selecting Henry Ruggs III, one of the most dynamic offensive weapons to enter the draft in several years.
Ruggs scored a whopping 24 touchdowns on 98 career receptions at Alabama, while averaging 17.5 yards per catch. He wowed scouts league-wide with his 4.27 second time in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, and will fit in nicely with Shanahan’s aggressive play-action offense.
With the acquisition of Ruggs, the 49ers can comfortably say goodbye to Marquise Goodwin. Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo adds another arrow to his quiver, and now boasts a formidable receiving trio of George Kittle, Deebo Samuel, and the rookie from Alabama, while leaning on the 49ers powerful running game.
It’s worth noting that after their two 1st round picks (#13 and #31 overall), the 49ers do not pick again until the 5th round (#156 overall). So, though we agreed not to make any trades for the sake of this exercise, it’s perfectly reasonable to expect Lynch to move down with one or both of his current first round picks. As it stands for this drill, we’re only drafting and not trading, so the hope for San Fran is to come away with a corner and a receiver.
Though the WR pool is stocked and we’re certain there will be a decent pass catcher available at 31, Ruggs is simply too explosive to pass up here. Gators CB C.J. Henderson garners some consideration with this first pick, but he’s just not the same caliber prospect as Ruggs. (Scott Loring)
Other Players Considered: CJ Henderson,CB, Florida; Jedrick Wills, OT, Alabama