What will the San Francisco 49ers be thinking in the 2017 NFL Draft?

Yes. Even after Texas A&M edge rusher Myles Garrett (presumably) goes No. 1 to the Browns, the 49ers would be reaching if they tried to jump on a quarterback. The team also is not in a luxury position to take another offensive skill player, and the best offensive linemen in this class aren’t worth such high picks.

Although a safety such as LSU’s Jamal Adams or Ohio State’s Malik Hooker wouldn’t be shocking, San Francisco’s choice should come down to a couple of defensive lineman, Stanford’s Solomon Thomas or Alabama’s Jonathan Allen. Thomas is a better scheme fit and has the better overall pass-rush potential wherever he lines up in the 3-4. GM John Lynch can kick off his drafting career with a fellow Cardinal product who can be a cornerstone.

But will any of these first-round series end in an upset? The consensus from our panel is no. The Clippers-Jazz matchup is the closest, but most of our voters believe Los Angeles will emerge. Even Houston-Oklahoma City, which is a competitive battle between top MVP candidates Russell Westbrook and James Harden, is a series most believe the favorite will win.

That said, most of us are expecting these series to go long. Only a few of us predicted sweeps, even with the most lopsided of series.

The cliche is that leaders lead by example, but a leader’s true power comes from the authority that his subordinates grant him. There’s not much Chris Paul can do when he scores and scores, yet no one responds to his example. There’s not much that he can do when he forces turnovers even against bigger opponents, and his teammates turn around and give up easy buckets. There’s not much that he can do when he creates and his teammates miss great opportunities.
nike_raiders_091

Kenyon Martin reveals the time he knocked Nene out with a ‘one-hitter-quitter’

KENYON Martin isn’t shy about voicing his opinion, as we learned after recent comments from his former coach George Karl.

This week, the former NBA All-Star joined Chris Broussard on the In The Zone podcast and relived some of the most brutal fights he witnessed (and participated in) during his time in the Association.

As Martin explains to Broussard, most actual NBA fights don’t happen on the court. It’s too easy to act tough during a game when you know someone will break things up before real punches are thrown.

Instead, NBA practices are where you’ll see the most intense altercations — yes, even among teammates.

To this point, the entire offensive side of the ball has seen the field. Running backs, offensive linemen and special teamers went on Friday while quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends went on Saturday. The final group, defensive backs, will see the field on Monday, the final day of this year’s combine in Indianapolis.

Myles Garrett is the big name to keep an eye on Sunday. The Texas A&M defensive end has been heavily rumored to be the top pick of the draft by the Cleveland Browns. Garrett impressed in the bench press and during interviews on Saturday, but the drills Sunday will get most of the attention. It’s unlikely a bad or good performance at the combine will radically shift his fortunes, but seeing the potential top pick in action is always worth it.

Stanford defensive end Solomon Thomas is another player who has been considered a potential top-five pick in the draft, and he will be in action on Sunday. Thomas is a player who could benefit with excellent showings in the timing drills.