49ers prediction No. 2: EDGE Arnold Ebiketie, Penn State
It would be almost silly if the 49ers didn’t take advantage of what’s turning into a notably deep cast of pass-rush prospects in this year’s NFL Draft.
Sure, there isn’t a no-doubt name like the Niners’ own, Nick Bosa, who came out in the 2019 draft. Yet there are plenty of decent-quality options spread throughout the rest of the draft regardless, and San Francisco surely wants to find someone to pair with Bosa so he won’t have to be tasked with providing the bulk of the defense’s pass-rushing prowess.
Particularly with fellow EDGE Dee Ford not likely to be coming back because of back injuries.
One player who could easily drop down to the latter stages of Round 2 is Penn State EDGE Arnold Ebiketie, who flourished during his lone year with the Nittany Lions after transferring from Temple to the tune of 9.5 sacks and 18 tackles for a loss in 2021.
At 6-foot-2 and 250 pounds, Ebiketie might be a bit undersized for a true three-down defender. Yet he has a quality array of pass-rushing moves, is slippery and could be utilized as a situational pass-rusher right out of the gate.
A perfect complement to a player like Bosa on third downs.