football-player football-score football-helmet football-ball Accuracy Arm-Strength Balance Ball-Security Ball-Skills Big-Play-Ability Block-Deconstruction Competitive-Toughness Core-Functional-Strength Decision-Making Discipline Durability Effort-Motor Elusivness Explosiveness Football-IQ Footwork Functional-Athleticism Hand-Counters Hand-Power Hand-Technique Hands Lateral-Mobility Leadership Length Mechanics Mobility Pass-Coverage-Ability Pass-Protection Pass-Sets Passing-Down-Skills Pocket-Manipulation Poise Power-at-POA Progressions RAC-Ability Range Release-Package Release Route-Running Run-Defending Separation Special-Teams-Ability-1 Versatility Vision Zone-Coverage-Skills Anchor-Ability Contact-Balance Man-Coverage-Skills Tackling Lifted Logic Web Design in Kansas City clock location phone email play chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up facebook tiktok checkbox checkbox-checked radio radio-selected instagram google plus pinterest twitter youtube send linkedin search arrow-circle bell left-arrow right-arrow tdn-mark filled-play-circle yellow-arrow-circle dark-arrow-circle star cloudy snowy rainy sunny plus minus triangle-down link close drag minus-circle plus-circle pencil premium trash lock simple-trash simple-pencil eye cart
NFL Draft

Justin Fields Should Be 49ers’ Pick at No. 3

  • The Draft Network
  • April 14, 2021
  • Share

Following the San Francisco 49ers’ well-documented trade with the Miami Dolphins to acquire the third overall selection in the 2021 NFL Draft, a major, potentially franchise-altering move lies ahead for general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan. Who goes at No. 3?

You can bet your house it’ll be either Alabama’s Mac Jones, North Dakota State’s Trey Lance, or Ohio State’s Justin Fields, but when it comes to narrowing down the list of gun-slingers to one, I would pinch pennies. 

Much has been made of the argument for each of the aforementioned signal-callers as the de facto “best fit” in Shanahan’s diverse offense, but as you maneuver your way through the weeks-long smokescreen of rumors and pro day visits as April 29 swiftly approaches, one quarterback has set himself apart.

Justin Fields will be taken third overall.

It’s the answer 49ers fans want to hear, but I offer you more into the background of my decision, and why in fact there really hasn’t been any doubt from the get-go in relation to Lynch and Shanahan’s Tuscaloosa to Columbus travel itinerary over the past couple of weeks to sway opinions. 

Is he the flashy pick? Is he the dual-threat option with tree trunks for legs who can sling it 60 yards across his body? Is he the kid who torched Clemson defensive coordinator Brent Venables in the CFP National Semifinal to the tune of six touchdown passes? Those questions can be followed with an easy “yes”, but the outlying question has remained if San Francisco envisions the same future under center the rest of us have for the former Buckeye.

"If I'm drafting in the top five, I want a prospect with high-end traits and high-end physical tools," ESPN’s Matt Bowen said of Fields.

“Tools” is often a word too often thrown around each spring. Tools, tools, tools. Everyone has them, some have more than others, some have less, but what Bowen was describing has been an ever-apparent skill set that is undeniably difficult to ignore within Fields’ ability under center. They also had “tools”, but Fields is not Dwayne Haskins or Cardale Jones. If you buy into the narrative of false flaws and lack of film study to turn you away from a clear top-five selection in any draft since the merger, stop reading here. Fields is simply different, a quarterback talent in his own class when compared to the two former Buckeyes. 

As a 4.44s 40 running, intellectual individual with above-average processing skills and vision, Fields has only scratched the surface when discussing his potential as a difference-maker at the next level. For an experienced 49ers roster under the tutelage of Shanahan, Fields offers them the best chance to get back to football in February of arguably anyone in the class. With three years of Power 5 experience littered with College Football Playoff appearances, at just 22 years old, Fields offers arguably the cleanest floor of all signal-callers, including Trevor Lawrence

Within a San Francisco offense predicated on its ability to work off play- and boot-action concepts, Fields is everything Jimmy Garoppolo hasn’t been, what Jones wouldn't be, and what Lance isn’t proven to be just yet

So now, as draft day gradually approaches for Lynch and Shanahan, the clear proof is in the pudding. Enough of the detours and roundabout act of who dons the scarlet and gold next fall.

For Fields, an athlete still growing both physically and mentally, his astronomical array of talent utilized under Shanahan serves as the ideal pick at No. 3. When it comes to franchise-altering talent, Fields fits the script, and Lynch and Shanahan shouldn’t delay in casting him for their lead role.

Filed In

Related Articles

Written By

The Draft Network