Player News - 49ers

Date: Team: Pos:

49ers signed Liberty K John Lunsford.

Lunsford (6'2/214) showed a monster leg in the Big South, setting an NCAA career record for 50-plus-yard field goals (12) and sending over 64% of his kickoffs for touchbacks as a senior. Unfortunately, Lunsford couldn't control his powerful leg, going 13-of-24 on field goals in 2015 and making just 48-of-79 (60.8%) of his career field goal tries. Lunford's ceiling is probably an NFL kickoff specialist.
May 2 - 12:51 PM

49ers exercised FS Eric Reid's fifth-year option for 2017.

GM Trent Baalke almost confirmed as much last month. Reid did not play well last year, but he is a talented young safety the 49ers would like to keep around for a long time. It would not be surprising if the two sides worked out an extension before this season. The option will pay $5.676 million in 2017.
May 2 - 11:04 AM

49ers signed Oregon DT Alex Balducci.

2014 first-rounder Arik Armstead, 2015 first-rounder DeForest Buckner, and Balducci all played on the same defensive line together at Oregon. Balducci (6'4/309) made 29 starts at defensive tackle for the Ducks, finishing his career with 10.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks. He was selected honorable mention All-Pac 12 as a senior. Balducci showed passable athleticism for his size at Oregon's Pro Day, running 5.01 with a 9-foot-5 broad jump and 33-inch vertical. In the NFL, Balducci best projects as a rotational early-down run stopper.
May 1 - 1:29 PM

49ers signed Utah DE/OLB Jason Fanaika

Fanaika (6'2/271) spent two years with Utah after a Mormon mission, spreading 20 tackles for loss, nine sacks, and three forced fumbles across 18 starts. Fanaika shuttled between defensive end and linebacker in college, but offers lineman-level athleticism with 4.92 speed and a 9-foot-5 broad jump. Already 24 years old with a reputation for sub-par conditioning, Fanaika is a low-ceiling, low-floor prospect lacking explosive elements to his game.
Apr 30 - 7:32 PM

49ers signed Stanford WR/TE Devon Cajuste.

Cajuste (6'4/234) was a three-year starter for the Cardinal, parlaying 90 career catches into 1,589 yards (17.7 YPR) and 14 touchdowns. Blessed with long arms (33") and huge hands (10 3/4"), Cajuste may have to transition from college wideout into a pass-catching tight end or H-back with 4.62 speed. Another option would be a "big slot" role. Cajuste is a plus athlete, finishing in the 88th percentile of SPARQ testing. There is a place for Cajuste in the pros; it just remains to be seen where he'll fit.
Apr 30 - 7:27 PM

49ers selected Western Kentucky CB Prince Charles Iworah with the No. 249 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.

Iworah (5'10/192) made 27 starts for the Hilltoppers, logging five career interceptions and earning All-Conference USA honorable mention from the league's coaches as a senior. His stock got a jolt at WKU's Pro Day, burning 4.34 with a 38 1/2-inch vertical and 10-foot-8 broad jump. Smallish and raw, Iworah offers developmental potential at slot corner.
Apr 30 - 6:31 PM

49ers selected Michigan State WR Aaron Burbridge with the No. 213 overall pick of the 2016 NFL draft.

Burbridge (6'0/206) earned 2015's Big Ten Receiver of the Year, wrapping his career with 165 catches for 2,174 yards (13.2 YPR) and ten TDs. An inconsistent ball catcher without much separation ability, Burbridge's deficiencies were exposed at the Combine, measuring in with tiny 8-inch hands and running 4.56 with a lowly 30 1/2-inch vertical. Media WR guru Matt Harmon has described Burbridge as a "catch-and-fall guy" who poses no YAC threat. Burbridge was a good college player whose game and skill set are unlikely to transition into the pros.
Apr 30 - 5:20 PM

49ers selected Florida RB Kelvin Taylor with the No. 211 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.

Taylor (5'10/207) shared time with Matt Jones and others before taking over as the Gators' lead back as a third-year junior in 2015, rushing for 1,035 yards and 13 touchdowns on 259 carries (4.00 YPC). Taylor averaged an underwhelming 4.34 yards per carry in his college career and only caught 32 passes in three seasons. Taylor's sub-par athleticism showed up at the Combine, running 4.60 with a 9-foot-5 broad jump. With small hands (8 1/4") and an indecisive running mentality, Taylor has the ceiling of a lightly used situational back.
Apr 30 - 5:14 PM

49ers selected Louisiana Tech QB Jeff Driskel with the No. 207 overall pick of the 2016 NFL draft.

Driskel (6'4/234) spent one year at Louisiana Tech after transferring from Florida, completing 62.4% of his throws with an 8.92 YPA and 27:8 TD-to-INT ratio. A terrific athlete, he added 92-323-5 (3.5 YPC) rushing and ran 4.56 in Indy. Billed as the "next Tim Tebow" out of high school, Driskel failed at Florida due to injuries and part-time usage, before excelling in the Bulldogs' wide-open spread. While he possesses NFL arm strength and top-shelf movement skills, Driskel is a major work in progress in terms of downfield accuracy and pocket poise. He's a project with underrated upside.
Apr 30 - 5:02 PM

49ers selected Ole Miss OT Fahn Cooper with the No. 174 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.

Cooper (6'5/303) spent two seasons at Ole Miss after a JUCO transfer, logging 26 starts -- 17 at right tackle and nine on the left side. He book ended Laremy Tunsil and filled in at left tackle during Tunsil's 2015 suspension. Cooper possesses long arms (34 3/4") and his versatile track record is a plus, but he is a pedestrian athlete with glaring pass-protection flaws. Lacking starter's skill set, Cooper might grow into a reliable swing tackle.
Apr 30 - 3:36 PM

49ers selected Georgia OT John Theus with the No. 145 overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft.

Theus (6'7/313) made 48 starts for the Bulldogs, earning first-team All-SEC as a senior left tackle after converting from the right side. Long armed (34 1/2") with big hands (10 1/8), Theus lacks NFL left tackle athleticism and the drive-blocking ability of a right-side offensive lineman. He got walked back by bull rushers at the Senior Bowl and couldn't block on the edge. Theus was a quality college starter who will likely struggle to transition to the pros.
Apr 30 - 2:15 PM

49ers selected Appalachian State DE Ronald Blair with the No. 142 overall pick of the 2016 NFL draft.

Blair (6'2/284) was one of the best defensive linemen in Sun Belt Conference history, spreading 53.5 tackles for loss and 20.5 sacks across 51 starts. He earned Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Year in 2015. Blair's Combine performance was less impressive, running 5.15 with a 30-inch vertical and 9-foot-5 broad jump. Blair's athletic limitations may prevent him from becoming a dominant NFL edge rusher, but he offers an intriguing blend of power moves, short-area explosion, and versatility. Rotoworld's Josh Norris has compared Blair to a poor man's Everson Griffen.
Apr 30 - 2:07 PM

49ers selected LSU CB Rashard Robinson with the No. 133 overall pick of the 2016 NFL draft.

Robinson (6'2/171) was suspended indefinitely in November of 2014 and never earned reinstatement, missing the entire 2015 season. He finished his career with one interception in eight starts. Plenty talented, Robinson failed at LSU due to maturity issues and a lack of weight-room commitment. He's entirely too thin and managed five bench-press reps at the Tigers' Pro Day. Robinson isn't yet 21 years old and looks like Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie getting off the bus, but he's going to have to make lifestyle changes to last in the NFL.
Apr 30 - 1:49 PM

49ers GM Trent Baalke expects third-round CB Will Redmond (ACL) to be ready for training camp

It would not be a draft if the 49ers did not take a player with a knee injury, and Redmond fills the quota this year after tearing his right ACL in October. "We're very comfortable with where he's at and very comfortable that he'll be ready to go come training camp," Baalke said. Redmond should be healthy enough to play this year, but he might need some seasoning before he is ready to contribute.
Apr 30 - 8:39 AM

49ers selected Mississippi State CB Will Redmond with the No. 68 overall pick of the 2016 NFL draft.

Redmond (5'11/182) turned pro as a redshirt junior despite making only seven college starts and tearing his right ACL last October. He finished his career with 13 pass breakups and five interceptions. Redmond flashed quick-twitch athleticism and pro-caliber coverage traits during his brief college career, but is severely short on size. Redmond could struggle to push for playing time this season.
Apr 29 - 9:52 PM


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