Busy 49ers add five players on Day Two
The San Francisco 49ers entered Day Two with five draft choices. And after a flurry of trades, they’ll enter Day Three with seven more.
Because of the trades, the 49ers only selected four players: running back Carlos Hyde (Ohio State), linebacker Chris Borland (Wisconsin), center Marcus Martin (USC) and guard Brandon Thomas (Clemson).
Thomas will more than likely redshirt his rookie season following an ACL tear during a private workout with the New Orleans Saints. The other three, though, should find themselves in the mix for playing time.
Borland, who played inside linebacker at the university of Wisconsin, will duke things out with Michael Wilhoite for the starting inside linebacker job until Navarro Bowman recovers from his ghastly knee injury suffered during the NFC Championship game.
Martin, revered by many as the best center in the draft while starting at guard as a true freshman for USC and later moving to his current position, offers the versatility that general manager Trent Baalke covets.
Hyde may be in line to eventually take over for Frank Gore as the 49ers feature back, but it’s a long line. Kendall Hunter, LaMichael James and Marcus Lattimore are already in place to keep things competitive.
Martin was the last player selected out of the NFL green room, something he said caused some mild anxiety:
“It was nerve-wracking. You sit there and you watch everybody else get called. But, obviously I just kept the faith and just kept my head on straight. I wasn’t upset. I sat there and did what I had to do. And when the 49ers called me, it was a great. I was ecstatic. Celebrated with my mom, my dad. You know, it’s a great opportunity for me.”
The 49ers may have also gotten a steal on Borland, who was the next-best inside backer after Alabama’s C.J. Mosely was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens.
NFL draft analyst Mike Mayock had some positive vibes that came with the pick, his televised instant analysis being:
“One of my favorite guys in the draft. Runs sideline to sideline, ‘he’s too short, he’s too slow,’ I don’t care — the kid can play.”
Though the biggest area of need for the team entering the draft was at wide receiver, the 49ers have yet to draft one. But hey, wouldn’t you know it, they traded for one instead — just like they did with Anquan Boldin last year.
Stevie Johnson, formerly of the Buffalo Bills, arrives for a conditional 2015 fourth-round pick that can become of third rounder should Johnson fulfill certain requirements.
Those details are unknown right now, and Johnson will need to pass a physical for the deal to be finalized. In 2013, the 49ers made a trade for cornerback Eric Wright, then with Tampa Bay, before they failed him on his physical.
The Buccaneers released him, and San Francisco picked him up without relinquishing a pick, and for less than what he would have been owed from his previous deal.
Johnson was drafted 224th overall during the 2008 draft, and has eclipsed 1,000 yards in three of his last four season. He is also a Bay Area native, growing up in Fairfield and beginning his collegiate career at Chabot Community College in Hayward.