Latest 49ers news and rumors counting down to 2024 NFL Draft

San Francisco 49ers helmet
San Francisco 49ers helmet / Ryan Kang/GettyImages

It's been (mostly) quiet on the 49ers front with the 2024 NFL Draft just days away, which could mean something... or nothing.

It's quiet. Almost too quiet.

Usually, the week leading up to the NFL Draft is full of crazy rumors and reports. The speculation about which prospects are top targets for any given team dominates the headlines.

For the previous two years, the San Francisco 49ers have been out of the first-round discussion, thanks to the 2021 trade-up that landed now-Dallas Cowboys quarterback Trey Lance at the cost of two future first-round picks.

Now, back into the first round, the chatter about the Niners' preferred prospect at No. 31 overall has been limited to mock drafts and player visits.

Here is the latest news surrounding San Francisco on the Monday before the draft.

Mike Florio: A possible Brandon Aiyuk trade is 'on the radar screen'

Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio speculated that the 49ers are potentially letting wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk explore the trade market, not necessarily to help facilitate a trade amid talks of a contract extension but to help gauge what his cost value might be on the open market.

Florio wrote:

"Last weekend, Aiyuk’s agent took issue with a report that Aiyuk has requested a trade. The truth, however, is more along the lines of Aiyuk getting clearance to see whether someone would be willing to do a deal with the 49ers, which necessarily would entail someone doing a deal for Aiyuk. That could help the 49ers, if the financial offer another team might make to Aiyuk isn’t dramatically better than whatever the 49ers are willing to pay."

Florio also added that trade rumors have quieted down a lot in recent days, which could be intentional. Yet the Niners could be enticed by a team that's not only willing to pay Aiyuk what he wants but is also open to trading a significant package of draft picks back to San Francisco as part of the transaction.

"Regardless, a potential Aiyuk trade is on the radar screen. If the 49ers play it right, we won’t know it’s happening until it happens."

That makes Round 1 of the NFL Draft this Thursday awfully critical.

Albert Breer details 49ers' needs in NFL Draft

On the surface, it doesn't appear as if the 49ers have a ton of needs in this year's draft, especially considering there are only a handful of starting positions up for grabs and mostly depth spots available for the newest cast of 2024 rookies.

But, with a likely massive roster overhaul due in 2025 because of a rising team payroll and quarterback Brock Purdy's own lucrative contract extension awaiting, those needs are bigger than one might think.

That's the direction Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer took in his latest column, listing out cornerback, offensive tackle, defensive line, linebacker, wide receiver and tight end as needed targets:

"The 49ers could use—yup—another offensive tackle. This is another one that’ll be dictated by who happens to fall in the round. If the tackle supply has dried up (a distinct possibility), then one of the second-tier corners, or a receiver to have in place to eventually take Brandon Aiyuk’s spot would make sense."

The key part is prioritizing, though, especially considering Aiyuk's situation and the need to upgrade at right tackle over the incumbent, Colton McKivitz. mock draft has 49ers trading up for a cornerback

As for those mock drafts, the latest seven-round mock from's Chad Reuter has the Niners acting aggressively in Round 1 by trading up to No. 25 overall to grab Alabama cornerback Kool-Aid McKinstry:

"Whether it's for a cornerback like McKinstry, an offensive lineman or a receiver, the 49ers could very well give up a mid-round pick to acquire one of the few missing pieces on an otherwise potent roster."

Florida wide receiver Ricky Pearsall is the selection in Round 2 at No. 63 overall, while San Francisco trades off its third-round pick as part of the aforementioned first-round deal.

With the 49ers' next pick, landing in Round 4, Reuter has USC safety Calen Bullock as the selection at No. 124 overall.

As for the actual draft, it'll kick off on Thursday, April 25 at 8 p.m. ET.

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