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2017 NFL Draft: Why 49ers might pass on taking QB early

The San Francisco 49ersundoubtedly have a need at the quarterback position, but not necessarily an urgent one where the 2017 NFL Draft is concerned.

With the No. 2 overall pick of the draft and a lengthy list of positions that need addressing, the club could go in a bunch of different directions with the pick. The consensus seems to be that there isn't a quarterback worthy of taking No. 2 overall, anyway, and new coach Kyle Shanahan said Thursday that the first order of quarterback business -- before any thought of free agency or the draft -- is to evaluate veteran Colin Kaepernick.

"Colin, just like any other player, (is) someone I'm going to be watching a lot of tape on over these next few weeks," Shanahan said at his introductory press conference. "Before we can look at anything, free agency, draft, anything, you have to know what the players on your team are. That doesn't happen from just turning on a game. That happens from watching a lot of stuff. It takes a lot of time."

Of course, the team could also add a veteran QB in free agency of via trade, which would fill the need at least temporarily. Another factor that suggests the 49ers will feel no pressure to grab a quarterback early in the draft: the length of the contracts for Shanahan and new general manager John Lynch. Both of them signed six-year deals. analyst Daniel Jeremiah projects the 49ers to select Ohio State CB Marshon Lattimore in his latest mock draft, and noted the commitment the club made to the Lynch-Shanahan regime.

"For me, Lattimore, he's the best cover corner in this draft. He's got outstanding ability to mirror wide receivers on the outside. He can take away a No. 1 receiver on the other side of the ball. You get a sure thing with that first pick," Jeremiah told NFL Network's Up to the Minute Live on Thursday. "I just don't know that there is a quarterback worthy of that selection at No. 2. And with a new head coach and new general manager on six-year contracts, I don't know that there is the urgency to get the quarterback thing done right now."

The 49ers could look to add a quarterback later in the draft or wait until 2018, when the draft pool at the quarterback position could be stronger than this year.

That could mean some growing pains at the quarterback position for the 2017 49ers, but the long-term best interest of the club might demand it.

*Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter **@ChaseGoodbread*.

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