The San Francisco 49ers need help in their pass-rushing department, and the 2019 NFL Draft should provide it. Here are five pass-rushers of intrigue at the NFL Scouting Combine.
After tallying just 37 sacks in 2018, tied for 22nd overall, the San Francisco 49ers are certainly going to look for a lot of pass-rushing help this offseason.
A number of those will be on display at the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine, which officially kicks off on Tuesday, Feb. 26 from Indianapolis.
Granted, it’s somewhat hard to gauge just how effective an outside pass-rusher will be based off these prospect “spandex Olympics.” Yet the ability to judge the intangibles, such as sheer speed and strength, does have its merits. So do all those player interviews and media sessions. Those are important, too.
The Niners own the No. 2 overall pick in the NFL Draft, followed up by pick No. 36 overall, which falls in Round 2. This gives Lynch plenty of options, perhaps trading down from his first selection or even tabling pass-rushing needs until the second round.
Whatever transpires, Lynch and his scouts will be closely monitoring this year’s crop of pass-rushers.
Here are five who should garner the most attention.
Let’s assume, hypothetically, the 49ers table their pass-rush needs until Round 2. Since this year’s crop of pass-rushers is pretty deep, there’s a good chance some high-quality prospects wind up falling into the second round anyway. Perhaps even into Round 3 or later.
One name to watch here is TCU EDGE Ben Banogu.
Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller suggested the Niners could be interested in targeting Banogu with their second pick in the draft.
The 6-foot-4, 249-pound Banogu managed 8.5 sacks in each of the last two seasons for the Horned Frogs, and NFL Draft Scout currently projects him to go between Rounds 5 and 6. A strong NFL Scouting Combine could cause his stock level to rise, however, so look for him to showcase his ability to transfer functional strength to practical ability.
Banogu doesn’t have the best bend out of most high-profile outside pass-rushers, so his efforts in both the shuttle and cone drills.