NFL Draft tracker 2021: 49ers’ first round pick, analysis

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NBC Sports Bay Area Staff
·3 min read
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NFL Draft tracker 2021: 49ers’ first round pick, analysis originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

With the 2021 NFL Draft finally here, all 32 teams can begin to shape the future of their franchise. After all of the evaluating of prospects -- including some who opted out of the 2020 season and thus haven't played a competitive game since 2019 -- the time has come to make selections in this week's seven-round draft.

This year's event in Cleveland features fans and some of the top prospects, although others, such as prospective No. 1 pick Trevor Lawrence, are, like you, tuning in from home. From a deep class of talented QBs to a variety of wide receivers, the 2021 NFL Draft has plenty of names for the San Francisco 49ers to choose from when they’re on the clock. They have several roster holes they will look to fill ahead of the 2021 season.

Follow along with your favorite prospects and each of the 49ers' selections here:

Who are some Day 2 players for the 49ers to target?

On Friday, the 49ers will make selections at Nos. 43 and 102 and will be seeking supporting cast members for Trey Lance. They might look to wide receivers, like Purdue's Rondale Moore or Clemson's Amari Rodgers. 

NFL draft winners, losers: 49ers triumph while Raiders flop

On the defensive side of the ball, cornerback remains a need, and Asante Samuel Jr. from Florida State is among the top options available.

49ers select Trey Lance at No. 3

The 49ers have their quarterback of the future.

After weeks of speculation about which signal caller San Francisco was targeting (and one day of Aaron Rodgers trade rumors), the 49ers took North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance with the third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.

Maiocco: Why 49ers selected Lance as their franchise QB

Lance played just one game in 2020, as North Dakota State postponed the rest of its season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2019, Lance threw for 2,786 yards and 28 touchdowns with zero interceptions. He also rushed for 1,100 yards and 14 scores while leading the Bison to a third consecutive FCS championship.

2021 NFL Draft Profile: North Dakota State quarterback Trey Lance

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With Lance en route to San Francisco, the attention now shifts to Jimmy Garoppolo and his future.

49ers earn high grade for taking big swing on QB Lance

49ers reached out to Packers about Aaron Rodgers

The 49ers reportedly contacted the Packers on Wednesday about a potential trade for Aaron Rodgers but were quickly turned down. However, Adam Schefter reported Thursday that Rodgers "does not want to return" to the Packers, while Pro Football Talk reports that the 49ers are one of three teams on Rodgers' wishlist, according to an "unimpeachable source."

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Rodgers has been at the center of trade rumors since the Packers selected Jordan Love with the No. 26 pick in the 2020 draft. Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio reported in January that Rodgers wanted a new contract in the ballpark of Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson's deals. The similarities between Kyle Shanahan and Matt LaFleur's offenses could make the 49ers an intriguing destination, but Packers GM Brian Gutekunst made it clear in his pre-draft presser that Rodgers will be Green Bay's quarterback "for the foreseeable future.”

Are the 49ers going to trade Jimmy Garoppolo?

Rumors have been circulating that the 49ers were looking to move Garoppolo either before or during the draft. There was even talk on Wednesday night that the New England Patriots were working on a restructured contract for Garoppolo to bring the QB back to the AFC East.

The tone changed a bit Thursday morning, with ESPN's Adam Schefter reporting the chances of a Garoppolo trade are "remote" right now. NFL Media's Ian Rapoport added that the 49ers "do not have plans" to move Garoppolo unless an offer is too good to pass up.