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NFL Mock Draft 2011: Prince Amukamara, Or: How The 49ers Stopped Worrying And Learned To Love The Numbers

Previously, we took a look at Patrick Peterson and what it would take for him to fall to the 49ers at the seventh overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft. For 49ers fans, Peterson might just be the most desired of all prospects in the upcoming draft, due to the team's inherent need at the cornerback position. Nate Clements and Shawntae Spencer were considered solid options heading into 2010, and they both fell short of expectations. Their careers have been defined as such, but the expectations were always lofty and it's unfair to say they are terrible by any means.

So Peterson is the guy, then. Peterson out of LSU is considered one of the better cornerback prospects in recent memory, and more than half of the teams ahead of the 49ers might be considering taking him. What if they do? What happens if Peterson is gone? Naturally, there will be players of other positions that the 49ers would be consider, someone like Von Miller or Blaine Gabbert. But they'd still have that need at cornerback.

It's true that the draft is deep at the position, but the 49ers are lacking so heavily on that front, they might consider going for the second best at the position, even as high as the seventh overall pick. Before the combine, that was considered by many to be a reach. After the combine, though?  He could even be picked before the 49ers are on.

Amukamara did well in the 40-yard dash, he did well in all of the positional drills and he left a big impression on just about everybody watching. His biggest concern was the aforementioned 40-yard dash, but he ended up with a 4.43 time, not bad at all and just outside the top ten for all positions. Amukamara is considered a very good zone corner and that fits right in with defensive coordinator Vic Fangio's scheme.

Value-wise, he may not pass someone like Von Miller, or someone like Marcell Dareus, but if the 49ers absolutely need to draft a corner in the first round (like most think), Amukamara is much, much more than a consolation pick. He's a lot more than the "second best corner." For the 49ers, he's a starting corner, and probably the number one corner at that. Going into the second round of this draft with Amukamara secured is not only a scenario that isn't bad, it's one of the better available.