The 49ers selected defensive end Ronald Blair out of Appalachian State with the 142nd overall pick.
School: App State
40 Time: 4.85
Blair was a second-team all-state pick in Georgia, but ended up at App. State instead of the SEC -? to the chagrin of the Mountaineers? opponents. In his first three full years on the field (he missed most of 2013 with a thumb injury), he?s been an all-conference pick (two years in the FCS-level Southern Conference, 2014 in the Sun Belt) racking up 33 tackles for loss and 12.5 sacks. Blair finished his career by winning the Sun Belt Conference?s Defensive Player of the Year (70 tackles, 19 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks), lining up outside and inside to take advantage of presented mismatches.
Flashes some polish in his game. Comes out of track stance and fires into blockers with knee bend and good pad level. Uses leverage and tremendous power at the point of attack to rock offensive linemen who let their pads get too high. Able to set a strong edge. Attacks and stresses the seam of double team blocks with power in his legs. His coaches rave about his leadership and work in the film room. Good lateral quickness with his feet and is very effective as a pass rusher in twists up front. Accelerates down the line to squeeze cutback lanes against the run. Bodies up and drives his legs through his tackles making sure running backs feel it. Has effective arm-over as his go-to move. Good length with big hands for his size. Can generate a quality bull rush.
Shorter than teams would like at the defensive end spot. Lacks the overall agility and athleticism to play standing up. Carries some bad weight around the midsection. Could improve his overall conditioning. Very little edge presence as a pass rusher. Unlikely to become a one-on-one winner as a pass rusher on the next level. Despite playing with knee bend out of snap, allows his pads level to get too high at times and can be knocked off balance as pass rusher.