49ers mock NFL Draft: 5 first-round targets for San Francisco

Drake London (15) of the USC Trojans (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)
Drake London (15) of the USC Trojans (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images) /
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Adam Anderson, Georgia Bulldogs
Georgia Bulldogs linebacker Adam Anderson (19) Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports /

Adam Anderson. 4. player. 814. . EDGE. Bulldogs

49ers NFL Draft Target No. 4: EDGE Adam Anderson, Georgia

It’s almost miraculous the 49ers saw the relatively healthy return of No. 2 edge rusher Dee Ford this season after last year resulted in a back injury many thought could end his pro career.

While Ford has been productive in 2021, he’s still played on a limited basis. And the Niners reworked his contract anyway, essentially giving themselves a relatively cheap out in 2022.

Should San Francisco pursue this, it’s hard to envision John Lynch steering clear of what’s been a team focal point since 2017: being strong along the defensive line. Finding another EDGE to pair with their Pro Bowler, Nick Bosa, is probably going to be another top item on Lynch’s to-do list.

There are a number of middle-of-the-pack EDGEs in this year’s draft class, but there are others who are also dangling towards the end of the first round.

One of them is top-ranked Georgia EDGE Adam Anderson.

Over the Bulldogs’ first six games, Anderson exploded out like a cannon, registering five sacks and five tackles for a loss. In terms of tenacity, violence and pass-rush moves, Anderson has them all.

The big question, though, is Anderson’s frame. At 6-foot-5 and 230 pounds, Anderson is a bit undersized and could be viewed as something of a tweener. This could be negated a bit if the 49ers keep their Wide-9 defensive alignment, which allows for speed over pure size anyway.

But as far as the rest of the tools go, Anderson has them.