On day 1 of the 2017 NFL Draft, Kyle Shanahan, John Lynch, and the rest of the San Francisco 49ers’ management did a fantastic job. Not only did they get the guy that they’ve been targeting in DE Solomon Thomas, but they also acquired more picks; this is exactly what a rebuilding team should be doing.
A rebuilding team needs to have plenty of picks in order to fill holes in the roster. With the statistically worst defense in the NFL, the Niners need plenty of picks to plug up those holes.
The night started with swapping the 2nd pick for the Chicago Bears’ 3rd pick. The Niners also received a 3rd round pick, a 4th round pick, and a 2018 3rd round pick. This trade allowed them to send a 2nd rounder and a 4th rounder to the Seahawks for the 31st pick, which eventually became LB Rueben Foster.
But what was so genius about the Solomon Thomas pick?
Thomas, to be quite frank, is a stud. He plays multiple positions, is extremely versatile, and is exactly what the 49ers are looking for. While he is an adequate pass rusher, he is known for his run defense, an area in which the 49ers struggled last year.
— Tej Kamaraju (@TejKSports) April 28, 2017
Pairing him with young players like DE DeForest Buckner and DE Arik Armstead creates a young, explosive, and formidable defensive line. Rounding out a promising defensive line is LB Aaron Lynch. Thomas is remarkably quick, with good hand-eye coordination. He also won’t make the same move twice in a single game, which keeps the opposing lineman guessing.
Perhaps the most interesting trait about Thomas, however, is that he is extremely ambitious. With seven offsides penalties in 2016, he is extremely eager to sack the quarterback. Shanahan may be able to turn that ambition into aggression, which would make this young stud a better player overall, maybe even an elite player.
Here’s are some of his highlights to leave you salivating about the 2017 season.