10 prospects 49ers should avoid selecting in 2021 NFL Draft

Quarterback Jamie Newman #12 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons (Photo by Michael Shroyer/Getty Images)
Quarterback Jamie Newman #12 of the Wake Forest Demon Deacons (Photo by Michael Shroyer/Getty Images) /
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Najee Harris, Alabama Crimson Tide
Alabama Crimson Tide running back Najee Harris (22) Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

829. . Running Back. Crimson Tide . Najee Harris. 2. player

No. 2 49ers Prospect to Avoid: Running Back Najee Harris

Gosh, it would be awfully cool to see Alabama running back Najee Harris in a San Francisco uniform. Especially considering the Crimson Tide standout is from Northern California.

The problem, though, is grabbing a player like Harris would be a luxury pick the 49ers simply can’t afford.

Harris’ outstanding performance in the CFB Playoff Championship game against Ohio State, where he recorded three touchdowns and 158 all-purpose yards in Alabama’s one-sided win in front of a national audience.

And it’s too enticing to envision what Harris could do in Kyle Shanahan’s offense, particularly with zero running backs on the 49ers roster signed beyond 2021.

The problem, though, is Harris essentially outplayed his draft value to the Niners. Now a likely late first-round pick, San Francisco would either have to trade down massively to extend value on grabbing Harris or trade up from its second-round pick to grab him. Considering the 49ers’ needs elsewhere on the roster, Harris comes nowhere close to filling the various needs Shanahan and Co. need to address elsewhere.

If the Niners had only a handful of roster needs this offseason, Harris would be an excellent first-round pick despite Shanahan’s previous history of waiting until later rounds or targeting the undrafted ranks to find runners.

Unfortunately, that’s not the case for San Francisco heading into 2021.