49ers safety prospect No. 4: Bryan Cook, Cincinnati
While Leon O’Neal Jr. projects as more of an in-the-box safety upon entering the NFL, Cincinnati safety Bryan Cook is certainly a lot more versatile.
This would benefit the 49ers in a number of ways, as they could deploy more three-high safety looks or potentially look to move Jimmie Ward closer to the box as he begins to get up there in age, allowing a younger player like Cook to man the last line of defense.
At 6-foot-1 and 210 pounds, Cook has the ideal size and adequate enough speed to be rangy in a single-high scheme as long as he gets some help underneath.
Cook finally made some marks for the Bearcats last season, registering a career-best 96 total tackles with two interceptions, but one shouldn’t automatically expect him to be a game-changing defensive back. In some regards, not unlike Jaquiski Tartt, Cook’s efforts often go unnoticed, and his ceiling at the pro level is probably that of someone who’s a good-quality player but won’t raise any eyebrows.
However, with the Niners relying more on their defensive line and linebacker corps, Cook merely filling a void with adequate results should be more than enough.
Expect Cook to be a Round 3 pick.