2019 NFL Draft: Why wide receiver isn’t a huge need for 49ers

Dante Pettis #18 and Kendrick Bourne #84 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Dante Pettis #18 and Kendrick Bourne #84 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) /

Wide receiver has been a position often mocked early to the San Francisco 49ers in draft mocks, but is the position as big a need as thought? Niner Noise breaks down the argument that there are more pressing needs.

When it comes to mock drafts, it isn’t uncommon to see numerous wide receivers mocked at No. 36 to the San Francisco 49ers.

On the surface, it’s easy to see why. The Niners need to find a guy who can score touchdowns, and the draft has some intriguing options when it comes to red-zone threats.

However on closer inspection, wide receiver appears to be a position that can be left until later.

Why? Well…

Jimmy Garoppolo likes to spread the ball around

As we know, the 49ers got franchise quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo via trade with the New England Patriots where he was understudy to Tom Brady.

The reason I bring this up is one trait that Garoppolo learned under Brady is he likes to spread the ball around to different receivers depending on the individual game. The advantage to this is that it makes it harder to predict where he could throw at any given moment.

It makes the need for a No. 1 receiver almost pointless, as the offensive game plan would almost certainly remain the same.

One could make the argument that the 49ers don’t have an elite receiver, which necessitates having to spread the ball around, to that I would refer to the above Kittle argument.

This also segues into another reason that “No. 1 receiver” is less important than one might think.

The 49ers already have a No. 1 guy

One of the arguments for grabbing a receiver is that the Niners lack a No. 1 receiver — a guy who demands attention and respect.

Problem is the 49ers already have that guy. Greg Kittle.

Oh wait that’s George Kittle is it? Damn it, ESPN!

In all seriousness, Kittle is the top target for the 49ers already. It always pays to have more than one elite target among your offensive players, of course, but the 49ers already have their receiving spearhead to plan around.

The Niners aren’t as desperate for a No. 1 receiver as it may seem.

Defense remains a huge need

While the 49ers made upgrades along their defensive front, there’s still a long way to go to fix it up entirely.

This draft promises to be much more talented on the defensive side early on, which suits the team perfectly. There’s a large array of defensive linemen, linebackers and defensive backs that will fill needs still currently noticeable on the roster.

Is receiver still a need? Of course. But is it the most pressing need when the team is undoubtedly struggling more at several defensive positions? I think not.


Receiver may not be the most pressing offensive need

The Niners need some work done on the interior of the offensive line, and No. 36 may be the pick to use for it.

Interior linemen tends to fall in the draft because they don’t fill a position most people think an early pick is worth using on. There will certainly be such players that fall into the top of the second round where the 49ers can swoop.

Protection is everything in the passing era of the NFL, and that’s not even getting into the need to have blockers break open lanes for the running game.

Since Garoppolo likes to spread the ball around, there’s a good argument that can be made that an interior lineman is the person to target in the draft.

Next. Why offensive line is a sneaky need for 49ers in the 2019 NFL Draft. dark

Do you agree? Sound off in the comments section and leave your opinion on where receiver sits on your list of priorities for the 49ers.

The draft begins on April 25, with the second round (and most likely time to select a receiver) starting the next day on April 26.