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Sunday, September 1, 2013

Team Talk: San Francisco 49ers

Today's two-a-days took us to SoCal earlier today and now up to the north end of the Golden State, as we visit the city by the bay - San Francisco.  And, boy is there a lot to talk about with the 49ers.  Adam Filadelfo breaks it down for you, and you can give him a follow on Twitter - @Frostt24.

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Unlike across the bay in Oakland, things are looking good in San Francisco. The reigning NFC champions are loaded with fantasy talent and will present fantasy owners with plenty of options on draft day.

Colin Kaepernick
- After playing only half of a season, Kaepernick became a fantasy darling almost immediately. He uses his legs as well as his arm to make big plays. He's a threat to score from anywhere on the field by running or he can throw a laser downfield for a touchdown. Drafting Kaepernick will be like drafting another running back in the quarterback position. While he is worthy of being one of the top signal callers drafted, remember he hasn't played a full season yet so a regression could be possible. With that said, I'd still feel comfortable having him as my starting quarterback and wouldn't worry too much about a sophomore slump. He's poised to be a fantasy stud again this year.

LaMichael James - Even though James is third on the depth chart, talent always has a way of finding itself on the field. Now dealing with a sprained MCL, he will be sidelined for a few weeks. He still holds value in your draft since he shouldn't miss more than 3 weeks. Gore is getting towards the end of his career and is always good for an injury during the season. Kendall Hunter was effective last year in spurts but James could still see time due to his explosive playmaking ability. He also provides value in the return game. Draft him late and hold onto him because he could be a difference maker later in the season.

Kendall Hunter
- As the primary backup to Gore, Hunter should garner some attention in drafts. At some point Gore will get hurt and Hunter will step right in. It wouldn't be a bad move to grab Hunter late in your draft even if you don't own Gore. He could provide value as a third or fourth back and maybe even a second if Gore goes down.

Frank Gore - For a running back who was supposed to fall off a cliff a few years ago, he still looks pretty good out there. While Gore is no longer the elite fantasy running back he once was, he can still help a fantasy team. He still gets goal line carries but he doesn't catch as many passes as he used to. He can still produce as a running back one in some cases and the 49ers do like to run the ball a lot. While he is just an injury away from losing time to Hunter, Gore should be a target in the second round of drafts and could help owners at least another year. Every year Gore is written off and every year Gore proves his doubters wrong.

Vernon Davis - Davis is capable of big weeks but he's just not consistent enough for me to consider him an elite fantasy tight end. But make no mistake  he should be one of the top tight ends off the board. Reports out of training camp were Davis was lining up as a wide receiver and was building a good rapport with Kaepernick. Davis is a bit of a mismatch for defenses and should have another solid fantasy season.

Anquan Boldin - The 49ers got a steal when they traded for Boldin earlier this offseason. He's a great downfield receiver who isn't afraid to fight for the football. If Kaepernick can trust him, he can just throw the ball up and let Anquan come down with it. I like Boldin a lot in this offense and he should be the top receiver in this passing attack. He's worth a late round pick and should provide owners with double digit games more times than not.

Jonathan Baldwin - This was a good trade for the 49ers. Baldwin could be what the 49ers need to keep some attention off of Boldin and Davis. He can be valuable certain weeks but he's not worth drafting at this point since we aren't certain of his role in the offense. He may be worth a pick in later rounds of a deeper league when receivers are at a premium but just don't expect that much from him until he shows he can be consistent enough to be put into your lineup.

Michael Crabtree - He's going undrafted and rightfully so. He's going to miss most of the season if not all of it and isn't worth a roster spot unless your league plays with an IR spot. If he comes back late in the season, he could be useful just in time for the fantasy playoffs. As far as drafting, you're better off passing on him.

D/ST
- Even though defenses are different from year to year, the San Francisco defense should be reliable again this year. They will be one of the top two defenses off the board. They will continue to be a dominant group and having them week to week should help fantasy owners sleep a little easier at night. There won't be too many weeks where they get lit up.