With the NFL draft fast approaching it was San Francisco 49ers GM Trent Baalke who was on the hot seat as he held his annual pre-draft meeting with 49ers beat writers today. And while a number of topics were discussed ranging from DE Justin Smith’s status to the team’s positional needs, it was second-year G Brandon Thomas that garnered early attention.
#49ers Trent Baalke on G Brandon Thomas taking over for Iupati: “He was drafted for this in mind. It was obvious why we drafted him.”
— Ryan Sakamoto (@SakamotoRyan) April 17, 2015
Last year around this time I told KNBR that Thomas would be the heir apparent to G Mike Iupati as I had a gut feeling he wouldn’t return in 2015. As it turns out that seems to be the case as Baalke drafted Thomas for this specific scenario.
“He looks very good at this point. He’s strong, he’s moving extremely well. So we feel real good about him.”
Baalke also went on to praise the team’s depth along the offensive line with the new free-agent signing of T/G Erik Pears and return of G/C Daniel Kilgore.
Thomas who is coming off an ACL injury should make an immediate impact as he has the strength of a guard with the athleticism and foot quickness of an offensive tackle.
With the 49ers preparing for the NFL draft, I would be shocked if they go offensive line in the first-round as the team looks to be set while returning some healthy players.