SANTA CLARA -- The 49ers will hold a private workout next month with Michigan State quarterback Connor Cook, a league source said Monday. Cook is generally considered the fourth-best quarterback in the draft and could be around late in the first round or early in the second of next month's draft.
Because they have 12 picks, the 49ers have the means to maneuver in the draft. The team could be considering a scenario similar to the one it used in 2011 when it drafted a defensive player, Aldon Smith, with the seventh overall pick and then traded ahead a few spots to take Colin Kaepernick with its second pick.
Kaepernick's future with the team is fuzzy. The 49ers have had trade discussions with Denver and Cleveland but those talks have been tabled for the last two weeks. He is one of four quarterbacks under contract in San Francisco for 2016 and the team has said it is prepared to keep him on the roster. The other quarterbacks are Blaine Gabbert, Thad Lewis and Dylan Thompson.
A large contingent of 49ers, including head coach Chip Kelly and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day, were on hand for Cal quarterback Jared Goff's pro day on Friday.
The other top passer in the draft, North Dakota State's Carson Wentz, will hold his pro day on Thursday. Another quarterback, Memphis' Paxton Lynch, won't throw until April 6.
The 49ers sent scout Steve Rubio and outside linebackers coach Jason Tarver last week to Michigan State's pro day where Tarver spent time with outside linebacker candidate Shilique Calhoun. Day likely will be on hand for Cook's and any other college quarterback's private workout with the team.
Kelly was present for San Jose State's, Stanford's and Cal's pro days last week. But he said he would not travel far afield like he did last year in Philadelphia where he had broader authority over personnel than he does with the 49ers.
Cook is unique among the top quarterbacks in the draft in that he operated out of a pro-style attack with the Spartans and took most of his snaps from under center. He has a quick release and threw for 3,131 yards with 24 touchdowns and seven interceptions last season. He was named the MVP in both the 2013 and 2015 Big Ten championships.
He was not asked to run with the ball, something at which Kelly's college quarterbacks excelled and which he is presumably seeking in an incoming quarterback.
Cook rushed 52 times for 56 yards last season. He has three career rushing touchdowns but none as a senior last year. Still, his 4.79-second run in the 40-yard dash, as well as a 33-inch leap in the vertical jump, suggest that he has decent athleticism and that his modest rushing totals had more to do with Michigan State's offensive system.
Cook measured 6-4, 217 pounds with 9 3/4-inch hands, which were average among the 20 quarterbacks at last month's combine. Kelly said he prefers quarterbacks with big hands.