Former 49ers player No. 3: Defensive end Solomon Thomas
Even though he never came close to justifying the 49ers using the No. 3 overall pick on him in the 2017 NFL Draft, defensive end Solomon Thomas should still be considered a notable player in recent Niners history.
If for no other reason than he was the first player selected in the Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch era.
True, San Francisco did Thomas few favors by playing him out of position for the bulk of his four-year tenure with the team, the former Stanford product recording a mere six sacks during his time with the 49ers and eventually finishing that term as a rotational backup, not the foundational piece for which the Niners had hoped when they drafted him.
Not surprisingly, San Francisco didn’t pick up Thomas’ fifth-year option, and he elected to join the Las Vegas Raiders on a one-year deal in 2021, finishing with a career-best 3.5 sacks while playing the bulk of his snaps on the inside.
Amid a regime change in Las Vegas this offseason, though, Thomas was allowed to hit the NFL free agency market, and the former top-five draft pick remains unsigned.