Jared Goff and Carson Wentz, regarded as the two best quarterbacks available in this month’s upcoming NFL Draft, will be visiting Santa Clara this week for meetings with the 49ers. Additionally, team officials are said to be interested in Michigan State’s Connor Cook, who is also scheduled to visit the team this week.
Newly minted head coach Chip Kelly personally visited Cal’s pro day on March 18 to have a look at Goff, and returned to Berkeley later in the month for a second session with the 21-year-old. He, along with Stanford’s Kevin Hogan, are permitted to visit the team facility on Wednesday for the 49ers’ pro day — all players native to the Bay Area are allowed to visit and take part in on-field workouts without it counting against the team’s list of 30 official pre-draft visits.
The 49ers possess the No. 7 pick in the draft, and one of the two quarterbacks are expected to be selected by Cleveland, who have the second overall pick. Regardless, Kelly said both men have impressed him, and he shared his thoughts on the subject during the NFL owners meetings.
“I’m impressed with both of those guys,” Kelly said. “I think they’re really talented. I think there are a couple of really talented quarterbacks. That will be the interesting thing in this draft — when do quarterbacks go? Are people going to trade to get quarterbacks? That’s probably the intriguing storyline of this draft.”
Goff hurled 43 touchdowns for the Bears last season, and has been touted for his pocket-passing abilities and quick decision making. He finished his collegiate career setting new school records for passing yards, touchdown passes and completions. Additionally, he set new Pac-12 single-season records for yards (4,719) and touchdowns (43), leading the Bears to their first eight-win season since 2009.
Wentz, who possesses the larger body and is widely considered the more athletic of the two, led North Dakota State to FCS championships in the past two seasons. He holds the school’s single-season records for completions, yards, touchdowns and total offense per game respectively.
After hosting Wentz at his QB camp, Jon Gruden shared raved reviews of the 23-year-old. “I think he’s the most NFL-ready quarterback that we’ve had in the last couple of years,” Gruden said.
Some have questioned the true skill Wentz might bring to the game coming from the Missouri Valley Conference, where the competition level is regarded as lower in players. However, quarterbacks such as Steve McNair and Joe Flacco have hailed from similar situations.
Paxton Lynch, regarded as the No. 3 quarterback available in the draft, has no scheduled meetings on the books with the 49ers currently, according to NFL Media.
David Barclay is the 49ers Insider for byteclay.com. He is a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. Email, firstname.lastname@example.org, Twitter, @DJamesIII