NFL: 49ers on the Clock
The San Francisco 49ers are coming off of a season in which they reached the NFC Championship game, losing in the waning seconds to their division-rival and eventual Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks. Colin Kaepernick’s interception due to some terrific defending from Richard Sherman sealed the deal for the Seahawks.
The 49ers biggest gap right now is their cornerback spot. Bradley Roby (Ohio State) would be a great fit into the 49ers defensive system that translated last year’s first round pick, Eric Reid, into a Pro-Bowl player. Roby would join Tremaine Brock, Chris Culliver, and Chris Cook at the cornerback position. He would have a good shot at starting the season as the third corner on the depth chart, ahead of Cook.
Roby posted a speedy 4.39 40-yard dash time at the NFL Combine. That kind of speed pays off in the open field as Roby rarely ever gets burned while in coverage. Roby has been compared to speedy cornerback Patrick Peterson because of his lockdown man-to-man coverage.
Roby stands at 5’11” and has a vertical of just over 38” so he has tremendous size, while being physical and aggressive. Also, he does not hesitate to sacrifice his body. The last point scares me a bit however due to the lack of depth at this position that the 49ers have. San Francisco will need Roby to stay healthy if they are to pick him as their first round draft pick.
In three seasons at Ohio State University, Roby started all 37 games that he played in. He finished his collegiate career with 44 passes defended and eight INTs. He had two INT touchdown returns and scored five TDs total between defense and special teams.
Roby would be a terrific fit for a formidable 49ers defensive unit that already ranks in the top 5 in many defensive categories. Expect the 49ers to nab either Roby or the best available defensive back when they are on the clock on Thursday night with the 30th overall pick.