49ers could finally solve tight end problem with this NFL Draft candidate

The 49ers have long been looking for a dynamic complement at tight end to help George Kittle, could their late Top 30 meeting with Johnny Wilson hint at a solution?
Miami v Florida State
Miami v Florida State / Don Juan Moore/GettyImages

The 49ers don't need many more weapons for its offense (pending any Brandon Aiyuk trade), but a complement to George Kittle at tight end could put it over the top for the 2024 season.

We're less than a week away from the NFL Draft, and with the San Francisco 49ers boasting a full complement of picks (and then some) for the first time in some years, you'll forgive this draftnik for being a bit impatient for Thursday night to come around.

My guess or your guess is as good as anybody's, the sheer unpredictability of this draft along with the intrigue of whether or not an exciting prospect falls to No. 31 (or low enough for the Niners to use their extra picks for a trade up the order) makes this the most exciting time outside of actual football being played.

Read More: Round 1 of NFL Draft is crucial for Brandon Aiyuk's future with 49ers

But let's cast our eyes to Day 2 and Day 3 of the draft where the Niners will be looking to use their savvy to patch over some other cracks in their roster. San Francisco has all but finished its draft meetings, but a late meeting has caught the eye of some.

Florida State's Johnny Wilson is an intriguing prospect for Friday. The 6-foot-6, 231-pound wide receiver is somewhat unusual in this group in that he possesses the body for a tight end, and indeed a lot has been said for him making the transition at the next level.

San Francisco doesn't need a receiver early in the draft unless Brandon Aiyuk is moved on, but a tight end could be another matter. It's no secret that the team wants another dynamic weapon to groom behind George Kittle, who's 30 years old and will be 31 early on in the season. Kittle is still performing at a strong level, but he is getting to the age where the 49ers need to ease the load off his shoulders a little bit.

Wilson had 41 receptions for 617 yards and two touchdowns in a shortened 2023 season (he played only 10 games), a bit of a statistical regression, but nothing too concerning. Wilson's a bit of an enigma in the draft, with NFL.com projecting him as an early Day 3 prospect and others projecting him sometime on Day 2.

Wilson looks like a bit of a project. He ran an interesting 4.52 40-yard time (coincidentally the exact same time Kittle ran in his draft year) but needs to improve his route running. He's got the size to be a good blocker but isn't the finished article. He could be a mismatch weapon in the NFL but doesn't look like he's putting it together yet.

The 49ers are in an interesting spot, however, and don't need to put him on the field right away. They can let him develop, and if Wilson was to be a Day 3 pick, a very intriguing candidate to develop for life after The People's Tight End hangs up the cleats and (probably) replaces them with wrestling boots.

Could this radical draft plan fix 49ers' offensive line woes once and for all?. Could this radical draft plan fix 49ers' offensive line woes once and for all?. dark. Next