San Francisco 49ers

'I liked him a lot': Scot McCloughan weighs in on 49ers' draft

Notre Dame's Mike McGlinchey, center, takes the field prior to a game against North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C., on Oct. 7, 2017.
Notre Dame's Mike McGlinchey, center, takes the field prior to a game against North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C., on Oct. 7, 2017. Associated Press file

Did the 49ers reach too far last month when they took offensive tackle Mike McGlinchey with the No. 9 overall pick?

Not according to the team's former general manager, Scot McCloughan, who gave the 6-foot-8 tackle from Notre Dame a 1-1 grade — which equates to a Top 10 pick — after watching film of his junior year.

"I liked him a lot," McCloughan said. "I liked the size, I liked the length. I liked the toughness. … Everyone's going to say he's a right tackle. I think he's a left tackle through and through. I like his intelligence, his instincts for the position. I liked the angles he would take and the fact that we wanted to finish (blocks)."

McCloughan, who ran the 49ers' scouting department for five seasons, now runs his own scouting service. The Cleveland Browns, whose general manager, John Dorsey, once worked alongside McCloughan with the Green Bay Packers, hired him on a short-term basis this past off-season to work on the Browns draft.

McCloughan said he watched McGlinchey's 2016 season, one in which he faced the likes of N.C. State's Bradley Chubb and Stanford's Solomon Thomas, and came away impressed. He said he gave McGlinchey and former Texas tackle Connor Williams the same grade following the 2016 season.

McGlinchey is bigger and longer than Williams, and made it through 2017 healthy. Williams, meanwhile, suffered a knee injury that limited him to five games. The Dallas Cowboys ended up taking him midway through the second round.

McCloughan said he thought McGlinchey would be a more athletic version of Andrew Whitworth, the Los Angeles Rams tackle who has made four Pro Bowls and who has been a starter since his rookie season in 2006.

"This guy (McGlinchey) is a much better athlete with better flexibility," McCloughan said. "And that's not knocking Whitworth, because I know he's been a good player. But this guy — his ability to sink his hips and bend his knees is hard to find for someone his height."

Here's McCloughan on the 49ers' Day 2 draft picks:

WR Dante Pettis, second round, 44th pick: "That scares me a little bit, because he doesn't play big. I understand he's got the nine punt returns for touchdowns and all that. But when I watched him, I thought, 'OK. Cool route runner. But how's he going to be against the Richard Shermans, the Brandon Browners, that type of corner?' Because they'll take him out of his route right away."

LB Fred Warner, third round, 70th pick: "I liked him a lot. I think he's going to be a damn good player, damn good player. If he comes in and he's not the starter right away, which I think he probably will be, you've got a really good core (special) teams guy. … This guy makes plays. He's athletic, he's got enough size to him. He can play the 'Will' (linebacker spot) or the 'Sam,' in my opinion. He's not a 'Mike' because he doesn't have the strength for it. But he's a good football player, really good football player."

DB Tarvarius Moore, third round, 95th pick: McCloughan said he didn't watch Moore until he arrived with the Browns. "Very interesting guy. Very interesting. All of a sudden, he popped up. And I looked at Dorsey and said, 'Who's this guy?' Because he's got size, he's got range and the guy makes plays. We liked him quite a bit. Not the first three rounds, but we liked him. And it's interesting, because the guy came out of nowhere. He plays smart for dang sure, and he makes a lot of plays in coverage and the run."