The San Francisco 49ers brought aboard key players in the 2020 NFL Draft, but getting some contributors from the undrafted ranks could be just as important. Here are three who could make the regular-season roster.
The San Francisco 49ers entered the 2020 NFL Draft with a shortlist of needs to fill out a Super Bowl-contending roster. Many felt the team needed to add players at cornerback, wide receiver and defensive line. The team was also thought to want to add depth at offensive line and tight end.
With the team sending defensive tackle DeForest Buckner to Indianapolis for the 13th overall pick, the loss of wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders to the New Orleans Saints in free agency and with the majority of the secondary not signed beyond this season, the needs seemed clearly defined heading into the first-ever virtual draft.
So the team traded back one spot on day one to No. 14, giving the Tampa Bay Buccaneers the 13th overall selection and acquiring a fourth-round pick to boot. They chose defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw of South Carolina and moved back up from No. 31 to 25 using pick Nos. 117 and 176 to select Arizona State wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk.
Pretty solid draft maneuvering to get two potential starters.
Then, just like that, things got a little wild. Veteran offensive tackle Joe Staley informed the team just days before the draft he would be retiring due to health concerns. The team then had to adjust their thought process on exactly how to navigate the draft.
And once again, it seems like Shanahan and Lynch stepped up to the challenge by trading for perennial Pro Bowl offensive tackle Trent Williams by using a 2020 fifth- and 2021 third-round selection.
The 49ers got an immediate veteran replacement.
As great as the deal was, it left the team with even fewer picks in this year’s draft. San Francisco added a tight end, another receiver and another offensive lineman as the draft came to a close.
But it still left the team with a few holes to fill on the roster. That is where undrafted free agents come into play, and the Niners brought in their own haul here, too.
The team immediately signed 10 of those players to compete for roster spots. We take a look at 3 UDFAs that have the best chance to make their way onto the team this coming season.