Grading 49ers 2021 NFL Draft class after first 5 weeks

San Francisco 49ers quarterback Trey Lance (5) Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Trey Lance (5) Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports /
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Trey Sermon, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers running back Trey Sermon (28) Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports /

49ers day-two NFL Draft picks

49ers NFL Draft Pick, No. 48 Overall: OL Aaron Banks (Grade: D)

Maybe we just have to wait and see, but offensive guard Aaron Banks has been by far the most disappointing player in the Niners’ 2021 draft class so far.

Despite an open invitation to compete for a starting guard spot after a good collegiate career at Notre Dame, Banks has been a constant name on the inactive list for San Francisco, still having yet to make his regular-season debut. Nonetheless, it’s going to be a long climb up the mountain for Banks to fulfill the expectations the 49ers had of him when they picked him in the second round.

Banks won’t get an F-grade, as we’ll cut him some slack for not being cut, but that’s about all of the positive for now.

49ers NFL Draft Pick, No. 88 Overall: RB Trey Sermon (Grade: C+)

Running back Trey Sermon is in an interesting position because he hasn’t played horribly when on the field. The problem is somebody else drafted at the same position has been playing better and is clearly preferred by Kyle Shanahan.

Elijah Mitchell is well and truly ahead of the depth chart, and Sermon is playing due to injuries at the position. Remember, Sermon was a healthy scratch in Week 1 and only got one carry in Week 2 before being a necessary fill-in starter in Weeks 3 and 4.

To be fair to Sermon, though, he has been decent when on the field. It remains to be seen where he fits in the shuffle for the rest of the year, however.

49ers NFL Draft Pick, No. 102 Overall: CB Ambry Thomas (Grade: C-)

Unlike Banks, cornerback Ambry Thomas has gotten on the field, albeit mostly in a special teams capacity.

That’s understandable, given he missed all of the 2020 college season due to an opt-out decision, although it has been slightly disappointing he hasn’t been able to feature on defense more, given the problems with injuries to the 49ers corners.

Thomas is one to watch, but only in 2022 and beyond, most likely.