Sakamoto: How Rams-Titans Blockbuster Deal Impacts 49ers’ No. 7 Pick


The Los Angeles Rams should have known better. They built their strong defense via the draft, reaping the benefits from the blockbuster deal that sent the No. 2 overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft to Washington in exchange for four draft picks including three first-rounders and one second-rounder.

Those draft picks would prove to be building blocks for the team’s defense moving forward as DE Michael Brockers (2012), CB Janoris Jenkins (2012), and ILB Alec Ogletree (2013) were all drafted in consecutive years. And while the team broke away from the defensive side of the ball in the 2014 NFL draft in hopes of landing their franchise left tackle in T Greg Robinson (No. 2) that has yet to pan out – but at least they had the currency to make the selection.

Fast forward to today and the Rams find themselves on the other side of the fence by pulling off another blockbuster deal, this time with the Tennessee Titans. A deal that included the Rams selling the farm for the No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft, they gave up a plethora of draft picks to land a franchise quarterback – most likely QB Jared Goff (Cal).

A six-for-three deal that sent away the Rams 2016 first-round pick (No. 15), two second-round picks (No. 43 & No. 45), third-round pick (No. 76), 2017 first-round pick and third-round pick in exchange for this year’s first-round pick (No. 1), fourth-round pick (No. 113) and sixth-round pick (No. 177), you can clearly see who came out the winners of this deal.

My perspective would change if there were QB Andrew Luck’s or QB Peyton Manning’s in this year’s draft class but there’s not. I’m not saying that Goff or QB Carson Wentz won’t be good NFL quarterbacks but rather making a statement that although there’s no such thing as a sure thing, Luck and Manning are the closest to it and Goff and Wentz don’t even come close.

However, what’s done is done and now people are asking me how this affects the San Francisco 49ers draft plans as they hold the No. 7 overall selection.

As of today, I have both the Rams and the Cleveland Browns taking either Goff or Wentz, while the San Diego Chargers land left tackle T Laremy Tunsil at No. 3. The Cowboys will undoubtedly take CB Jalen Ramsey at No. 4 as they are not shy on drafting cornerbacks in the first-round while having to unload CB Brandon Carr’s $13.8 million cap figure.

With the 49ers target likely being ILB Myles Jack, I don’t see him getting past the Jacksonville Jaguars at No. 5. At Jack’s pro day, 49ers OLBC Jason Tarver was seen putting Jack through positional drills as GM Trent Baalke looked on.

Too bad for the 49ers he won’t be available when the team is on the clock, as the Jaguars could use a sideline-to-sideline presence to pair with LB Paul Posluszny and LB Telvin Smith.

That leaves the team to target Oregon product DE DeForest Buckner and Ohio State OLB Joey Bosa. Unfortunately, it appears that the Ravens will take Buckner in a heartbeat over Bosa as he would immediately fill the void left by DE Chris Canty in the team’s 3-4 base defense. Not to mention, scouts highly question Bosa’s ability to transition to a 3-4 outside linebacker due to his immobility to drop back in zone coverages, I can’t help but think that Ravens GM Ozzie Newsome will take the best player available and select Buckner.

Baalke will definitely be on the phones trying to trade back since Bosa is not a good fit in the team’s 3-4 base while selecting RB Ezekial Elliot would be questioned due to already having RB Carlos Hyde, RB Shaun Draughn, RB Mike Davis, and RB Jarryd Hayne on the roster.

Sure the team could take a flyer on either one of the Clemson pass-rushers; DE/OLB Shaq Lawson and DE/OLB Kevin Dodd while also possibly selecting their right tackle of the future in Notre Dame T Ronnie Stanley but are they considered good value at No. 7? I’m not too sure.


However, if the 49ers are unable to trade down and have to make the selection, I believe that Stanley would be their target. It’s not by coincidence that OLC Pat Flaherty was seen working with Stanley in positional drills at his Notre Dame Pro Day while the team desperately needs a right tackle to pair with Pro Bowl LT Joe Staley. Also good to keep in mind that the last time the 49ers beefed up their offensive line was back in 2010, when Baalke selected T Anthony Davis (No. 11) and G Mike Iupati (No. 17) in the first-round.

Stanley is by far the second best tackle in this year’s draft, so selecting Stanley wouldn’t be a surprise while pushing second-year RT Trent Brown for the starting role. At 6-6, 312, Stanley has the athleticism, fundamentals, and intelligence needed to thrive under HC Chip Kelly’s zone blocking scheme. Remember, the team covets athletic tackles with an elongated wingspan as they drafted T Trent Brown last year while holding pre-draft visit for players like T Seantrel Henderson in year’s past.

With the 49ers shoring up their offensive line with the free-agent signing of G Zane Beadles, you can bet they are not done yet, as they are will surely select at least two offensive lineman in the upcoming draft.


30 Pre-Draft Visits

WR Corey Coleman (Baylor)

WR Laquon Treadwell (Ole Miss)

DE Robert Nkemdiche (Ole Miss)

DE/OLB Shaq Lawson (Clemson)

DE/OLB Kevin Dodd (Clemson)

OLB Kamalei Correa (Boise St.)

ILB Jaylon Smith (Notre Dame)

CB Mackensie Alexander (Clemson)

CB Eli Apple (Ohio St.)

CB William Jackson III (Houston)


Private Workout

QB Jared Goff (Cal)

QB Carson Wentz (North Dakota St.)

QB Connor Cook (Michigan St.)

WR Leonte Carroo (Rutgers)

OT Darrell Greene (San Diego St.)

DE/OLB Shaq Lawson (Clemson)

DE/OLB Kevin Dodd (Clemson)

LB B.J. Goodson (Clemson)


Pro Day Meeting

OG Joshua Garnett (Stanford)

OT Lars Hanson (Sacramento St.)

T/G Rees Odhiambo (Boise St.)

TE Nick Vannett (Ohio St.)

WR Tyler Boyd (Pitt)

WR Keyarris Garrett (Tulsa)

WR De’Runnya Wilson (MSU)

DE Mike Rose (NC State)

DE/OLB C.J. Johnson (Ole Miss)

OLB Beniquez Brown (MSU)

OLB Darron Lee (Ohio St.)

OLB Yannick Ngakoue (Maryland)

CB Kennya Dennis (Missouri)

CB Taveze Calhoun (MSU)

CB Zack Sanchez (Oklahoma)

CB Blake Countess (Auburn)


Senior Bowl Meeting

NT Austin Johnson (Penn St.)

ILB Reggie Ragland (Alabama)


East/West Shrine Bowl Meeting

QB Vernon Adams (Eastern Washington)

Ryan is the Founder/CEO of, 49ers Beat Writer, Live Game Day Correspondent for Bleacher Report and member of Pro Football Writers of America. Born and raised in San Jose, he also graduated from San Diego State University. His work has been featured on NFL Network, 95.7 The Game, National Football Post, Sports Illustrated, FanSided Network, ESPN Radio, CBS Sports 810, and NBC Bay Area News. For more information, please contact him via email at or call him at (408) 622-0996.