Joshua Garnett will now be opening spaces for the San Francisco 49ers to run through next year. Taken in the late first round with the 28th pick, Garnett went higher than expected Thursday night and was the first Stanford player taken. In fact he was not projected to be drafted in the first round at all. Chip Kelly and the 49ers gave up several picks in a trade to the Kansas City Chiefs to move up and take Garnett. The 49ers gave up 50+ sacks last year, and will need help on the offensive line.
The Outland Trophy winner will compete for a starting job immediately with the 49ers, who have a struggling offensive line. Garnett will most likely make a difference pushing linebackers out of the way and moving up field to lead block for the San Francisco rushing attack. Garnett did exactly this for Christian McCaffrey in 2015 and the 49ers hope he can repeat that success in the NFL in 2016.
Besides winning the Outland Trophy, Garnett was an unanimous All-American and Morris Trophy winner as well. Congratulations to Joshua Garnett and welcome the NFL!