Round 4, Pick No. 134 Overall: 49ers select EDGE Tyreke Smith, Ohio State
While Nick Bosa wowed with 15.5 sacks last year, leading the Niners en route to their 48 sacks last season, he needs help heading into 2022.
San Francisco likely won’t be seeing any more of EDGE Dee Ford, and it also lost its second-best sack specialist in defensive end Arden Key, who signed a new deal with the Jacksonville Jaguars after registering 6.5 sacks a year ago.
Sure, perhaps EDGE Kemoko Turay backs up his career-best 5.5 sacks from last season with the Indianapolis Colts, but that’s a mere hope. And it isn’t as if the 49ers will completely sleep on an awfully deep edge-rushing class in this year’s NFL Draft.
Ohio State EDGE Tyreke Smith likely won’t be an every-down pass-rusher, and he still needs to fill out his 6-foot-3, 254-pound frame a bit. While his seven career sacks over four years with the Buckeyes won’t jump out at you, his 4.86 40-yard time from the NFL Scouting Combine, plus a relentless motor on the field, should definitely.
Rotational pass-rushers matter, and that’s what the Niners do here.