Clemson linebacker Kevin Dodd: 'I can do whatever it takes'
SANTA CLARA -- Even though free agency is in full swing (attention 49ers: it began last week), teams have been sending resources to various pre-draft pro days. All of the local college programs, from Sacramento State to Stanford to Cal, where quarterback Jared Goff will be the headliner, will hold their pro days this week. Several major college programs were featured last week and the 49ers had a prominent presence.
Minnesota. General manager Trent Baalke made an appearance at the Gophers' pro day March 7. Minnesota has several mid-round prospects, including cornerbacks Eric Murray and Briean Boddy-Calhoun. They also have an outside linebacker prospect in De'Vondre Campbell and a receiver, K.J. Maye, who perhaps fits as a slot-receiver type in Chip Kelly's scheme.
Auburn. Director of college scouting Matt Malaspina attended Auburn's pro day on March 7. According to NFL Insider Tony Pauline, the 49ers met with cornerback Blake Countess, who at 5-9 1/2 is smaller than the 49ers' ideal corner but who could be a late-round pick or undrafted free agent.
Mississippi State. Regional scout Darrell Moody was on hand for the Thursday session. The 49ers reportedly met with inside linebacker Beniquez Brown and wide receiver De'Runnya Wilson. The two headliners here are quarterback Dak Prescott, who was arrested Saturday on DUI charges and who in doing so may have made himself a third-day pick, and defensive lineman Chris Jones, who at nearly 6-6, 311 pounds, fits the 49ers' long-armed mold for defensive linemen.
Clemson. Malaspina was on hand Thursday for Clemson's pro day, which featured two pass-rush prospects, Shaq Lawson and Kevin Dodd. The latter apparently looked good when asked to do outside linebacker drills and said at the combine he is comfortable playing from a two-point stance, which he did occasionally with the Tigers.
Ohio State: An NFL team could restrict itself to only Ohio State prospects during the draft and still come away with an excellent class. The 49ers had two scouts on hand Friday to watch the Buckeyes, Malaspina and regional scout Steve Rubio. They reportedly had a meeting with the school's top prospect, Joey Bosa, who (in my mind, at least) would begin his NFL career as an outside rusher if he were to fall to the 49ers. Other Ohio State prospects who might catch the 49ers eye include inside linebacker Darron Lee, tight end Nick Vannett and receiver Braxton Miller. The 49ers spent extra time with both Lee and Vannett. Lee is a speedy inside linebacker and perhaps a dark-horse candidate for the 49ers at pick No. 7. Vannett is competing with Stanford's Austin Hooper as the best all-around tight end in the draft. He's considered a mid-round pick.
UCLA: Perhaps the most important pro-day workout will be given by UCLA linebacker Myles Jack on Tuesday. Jack is considered a Top 10 prospect and is certainly a possibility for the 49ers at pick No. 7. But he injured his knee during UCLA's season and did not work out last month at the combine. San Jose State’s pro day is Wednesday, Stanford’s is Thursday and Cal’s is Friday.