No. 10: Offensive Tackle Jake Matthews
2017 Team: Atlanta Falcons
The 49ers are going to need to find a replacement for aging veteran left tackle Joe Staley at some point in the near future.
And while the draft is a desirable route, this year’s NFL Draft class isn’t exactly loaded with promising tackles. So that could push the Niners into the free-agent route next offseason.
One of the names to consider is current Atlanta Falcons left tackle Jake Matthews.
At 25 years old, Matthews is only just beginning to hit his prime. The Falcons could still pick up his fifth-year option, negating the 2014 first-round pick’s ability to hit the open market. But if they didn’t, one can bet head coach Kyle Shanahan would be interested.
Matthews played under Shanahan when the latter was offensive coordinator in Atlanta.
Pro Football Focus gave Matthews a respectable 74.3 overall grade on the season a year ago. He could stand to improve his run-blocking abilities a bit, but Matthews is a solid all-around package if he winds up being available.