NFL Draft 2021: 49ers, 4 other teams who may want Mac Jones

Mac Jones #10 of the Alabama Crimson Tide (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Mac Jones #10 of the Alabama Crimson Tide (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images) /
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Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons
Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 4: Falcons could use the NFL Draft to replace Matt Ryan

Speaking of Matt Ryan and the Falcons, it’s entirely possible the new regime in Atlanta is looking for an heir apparent to their own franchise quarterback even though Ryan restructured his contract at the end of 2019 and is financially committed to through 2023.

It’s unclear just how much push a rebuilding Atlanta squad will want to make, as there are plenty of other roster needs elsewhere.

But considering the 49ers leapfrogged the Falcons to get up to No. 3, as Atlanta is drafting at No. 4 overall, it’s surely possible the Niners front office anticipated the Falcons wanting a quarterback with their first pick.

Even if Atlanta is eyeing Mac Jones, which is entirely possible, it’ll still have a shot at one of the other two quarterbacks not picked by San Francisco, Justin Fields or Trey Lance in this scenario. But allowing the Falcons to key in solely on those two would give Atlanta the opportunity to round out its NFL Draft board much earlier in that case.

In a simpler sense, it’s better from the 49ers’ perspective to let the Falcons have just 10 minutes to make a decision instead of weeks.

Still, the comparison and similarities between Ryan and Jones are there, so the Niners may simply want to keep the Falcons guessing until the very last moment.

Why? Well, why not?