John Lynch: Mock draft “exercises are invaluable”
The 49ers this week began hosting some of the NFL Draft’s top prospects for official visits.
Alabama defensive tackle Quinnen Williams met with 49ers brass Monday, according to NBC Sports Bay Area, and Kentucky pass rusher Josh Allen visited Tuesday and Wednesday, per ESPN. Both are considered strong candidates for San Francisco’s No. 2 overall selection when the draft kicks off April 25.
Each team is allotted 30 official visits at their facilities, which doesn’t include meetings with prospects at their schools or various pro days.
The 49ers should be familiar with Williams. They had a meal with him at an IHOP before his Pro Day on March 19 in Tuscaloosa, Ala. General manager John Lynch and personnel executive Adam Peters didn’t visit with Allen at his Kentucky pro day, which might be why his visit in Santa Clara lasted two days.
San Francisco is also expected to host Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa before the draft. Lynch and Peters had a face-to-face meeting with Bosa on March 20. Bosa is the player most often projected to the 49ers in mock drafts with their No. 2 selection, even after trading for Chiefs pass rusher Dee Ford last month.
Williams had eight sacks and 19.5 tackles for loss in his breakout season for the Crimson Tide. Allen was among the country’s leaders with 17 sacks while helping Kentucky to the Citrus Bowl, a 27-24 victory over Penn State in which Allen had three sacks and blocked a field-goal attempt.
Bosa appeared in only three games last season due to a core muscle injury. Instead of rejoining his Buckeyes teammates in November, he elected to sit out the rest of his true junior campaign to prepare for the draft. Bosa logged 17.5 sacks and 29 tackles for loss in 29 games, including four sacks last season, before having surgery.