2016 NFL Draft: Round 1 Big Board for the San Francisco 49ers
By Peter Panacy
Linebacker Myles Jack, UCLA
If quarterback Jared Goff is off the board at No. 7, the 49ers shouldn’t simply select fellow quarterbacking prospect Carson Wentz. Instead, they should shore up the defense — an unquestionable need given head coach Chip Kelly’s offense and the formidable nature of other NFC West defenses.
UCLA linebacker Myles Jack would have been a clear top-five pick had it not been for his meniscus injury, which limited him to just three games in 2015.
San Francisco needs linebacker help — either at the inside or outside positions. And Jack has the makeup to perform both.
Here’s what Rob Rang of CBS Sports said about Jack and his prospects and ceiling at the pro level:
"If not for the torn meniscus that ended his collegiate career abruptly and has kept him from working out since, Jack might rank even higher on this list. In a class full of instinctive linebackers, Jack stands out due to his unparalleled combination of awareness, agility and closing speed. Plug him in at outside linebacker for a 4-3 club and forget about the position for a decade while he competes for Pro Bowl honors on an annual basis."
Take note on the defensive scheme though. Jack is an obvious fit for a 4-3 defense. San Francisco will employ a 3-4. One may argue Jack would be an easy slide-in fit here. And perhaps that argument is correct.
But there are some doubts.
Still, Jack may be too good a talent to pass up if he’s available at No. 7 — possibly a player worth shifting the base defensive formation at some point down the road (it isn’t as if the 49ers have a realistic No. 2 inside linebacker at the current moment).
Next: Option 3: DE DeForest Buckner