49ers Select at Ray MacDonald at 97

The 97th pick overall, the comp pick the 49ers received for the loss of Julian Peterson, they pick Ray McDonald DE/DT, from Florida, who most likely will be a OLB in the 3-4.

The son of former University of Florida receiver Ray McDonald (1982-85), Raymondo made a name for himself on the other side of the ball for the Gators. He battled back from a pair of serious knee injuries in 2005 to re-establish himself as one of the most tireless workers in the trenches.

When injuries and suspensions depleted the team’s defensive line depth, McDonald made a seamless move back to nose tackle from his strong-side defensive end position in the later stages of 2006, and his leadership in the middle helped Florida march on to capture the national championship.

McDonald was one of the state of Florida’s elite defensive linemen at Glades Central High School. He earned Prep Star and National Bluechips All-American honors in 2001 and was named to Prep Star’s Dream Team. That publication ranked him among the nation’s top eight defensive linemen and top two in the Southeast. He also ranked among the nation’s top 30 defensive ends by Rivals.com.

The Palm Beach County Defensive Player of the Year in 2001 helped the team to the Class 3A state championship as a junior, and started his final three seasons as a defensive tackle. He recorded 132 tackles with 24 quarterback sacks as a senior.

McDonald enrolled at Florida in 2002, performing on the scout team as a defensive end. He became the first freshman to start 12 games on the defensive line in 2004 and was only the fourth defensive lineman in UF history to start as a freshman in the season opener (Reggie McGrew started in 1996, Mark Campbell in 1992 and Phillip Johnson in 1989), after taking over weak-side defensive tackle duties. McDonald registered 54 tackles (34 solos) with four sacks and eight stops behind the line of scrimmage. He also caused two fumbles and deflected a pair of passes.

In 2004, McDonald started seven of 11 games at nose tackle, sitting out the Middle Tennessee contest after suffering a left ankle sprain vs. Louisiana State. He was credited with 39 tackles (26 solos), three sacks and 10 stops behind the line of scrimmage. He also had four quarterback pressures and a fumble recovery. In addition to his defensive duties, McDonald contributed on special teams on the punt and extra point and field goal block teams.

His junior season was limited to eight games and three starting assignments, as McDonald suffered a partially torn right anterior cruciate ligament early in the season vs. Tennessee that required surgery. He returned for a few games before he was again shut down, undergoing another surgical procedure. He finished the season with eight tackles (6 solos), a sack and three stops for losses.

McDonald returned with much better range and quickness in 2006. He started every game, lining up at strong-side defensive end before shifting to nose tackle in the ninth game of the season vs. Vanderbilt. He earned All-Southeastern Conference honors after recording 36 tackles (19 solos), three sacks, 4½ stops behind the line of scrimmage and two pressures. He returned a fumble recovery for a score, blocked a kick and batted down five passes.

In 46 games at Florida, McDonald started 36 times. He collected 137 tackles (85 solos) with 11 sacks for minus-64 yards and 25½ stops for losses totaling 103 yards. He added six pressures with two forced fumbles and one fumble recovery. He also deflected seven passes and blocked one kick.

Positives: Has a stout frame with good chest thickness, long arms, large hands, wide waist and hips and thick thighs … Lacks sustained speed, but shows good explosion off the snap that allows him to consistently gain advantage in his initial charge … Added bulk to his frame before the 2006 season, and it was evident by the way he was able to hold ground at the point of attack and split double teams better than he did in the past … Has the lateral agility to get out and neutralize the outside rush, showing the vision to quickly locate the screens and sweeps … With his improved strength, he seemed to be much more active with his hands, using them effectively to prevent blockers from locking on and walling him off … Has a good feel for blocking schemes and knows the assignments of each of his defensive line mates … Has played both tackle positions and strong-side defensive end during his career, and that versatility will prove invaluable at the pro level (could either be utilized as a defensive end in a 3-4 alignment or as an under tackle in a 4-3 scheme) … Naturally strong athlete who didn’t always shoot his hands well in the past, but technique refinement in 2006 saw McDonald generate a strong punch to shock and jolt the blocker … Was also very effective using his hands to lock on, grab and drag down ball carriers … Has the sudden burst off the ball to push the pocket and clog the rush lanes (needs to use it with more consistency and for longer periods, though) … Has the natural explosion and quick first step to reach the corner and showed improved lateral range to slip in-line … When he keeps his pads down, he generates the functional strength to hold his ground firmly … Has the athletic agility to generate quick counter moves and demonstrates the body control to turn, spin and slip past a lethargic offensive lineman … You can see on film that he knows how to use his long arms to neutralize reach and cut blocks … Lacks an array of pass rush moves, but shows good effort in attempts to push the pocket.

Negatives: Has added needed bulk, but can still use some additional weight to use vs. double teams … Has an explosive initial burst, but his speed tapers off when he has to move long distances … Has quick reactions when he locates the ball, but just seems to lack a feel for the ball, especially in play-action … When he keeps his pads down, he can hold his ground, but tends to get too tall in his stance shooting the gaps, struggling to maintain position … Has improved his hip snap, but when he fails to sink his weight, he gets his feet too wide, losing leverage and is then beaten by the double team … Has improved his hand usage, but when he fails to shoot them, blockers get into his chest and he then struggles to disengage … Lacks pass rush moves and his only effectiveness here is when he gets a free lane to the quarterback … Stout enough to push the pocket, but doesn’t have the sustained speed to pursue in space (six pressures in 46 games) … Takes well to hard coaching, but needs to be pushed and prodded at times (needs to play with a consistent motor).

Compares To: James Hall, Detroit … There might be bigger and quicker defensive ends than McDonald and Hall, but both rely on an explosive first step to surprise a lethargic blocker … McDonald is a bit of a ‘tweener, but his added bulk and strength will make him an effective under tackle in a 4-3 alignment, and he is stout enough to play defensive end in a 3-4 formation … Just don’t ask him to get to the quarterback on a regular basis, as he lacks pass-rush technique and an array of moves.

2004: Sat out the Middle Tennessee game (10/16) after suffering a left ankle sprain the previous week vs. Louisiana State.

2005: Underwent surgery in September to repair a partially torn right knee ACL. Started the first three games of the season before having to sit out the next three following surgery … Reappeared in the lineup vs. Louisiana State and Georgia before sitting out the remainder of the season after having a second and season-ending surgery on his injured right knee.

2006: Suffered a hyperextended right elbow when a teammate fell on him as he was making a tackle vs. Arkansas (12/02). The doctors thought the arm was broken originally, but McDonald was back in the starting lineup one month later vs. Ohio State.

Campus: 4.9 in the 40-yard dash … 465-pound bench press … Bench pressed 225 pounds 33 times … 450-pound squat … 33-inch vertical jump … 9-4 broad jump … 4.7 20-yard shuttle … 34¼-inch arm length … 10¼-inch hands … Right-handed … 13/21 Wonderlic score.


~ by 49ersNews on April 28, 2007.

59 Responses to “49ers Select at Ray MacDonald at 97”


  2. Awesome pick.

  3. I hope he can stay healthy, if so we got a great pick!

  4. Nice!!

  5. This guy was considered better than Jarvis Moss when healthy. If he can stay healthy and his confidence stays up. The Niner D will cause Havoc. And it not over yet.

  6. If he can stay healthy!


  8. McDonald is a stud and he’s a champion! Great pick!!!

  9. Such a good day. I would expect that the jackson trade would be our 104. NINERS

  10. tomarrow we got the 104th pick,and hopfuly we will find out and see if darrell jackson passes his physical.



  13. is he a 34 olb? i dont think so he loose a lot of weight because he ate something that ot him sick. i think we need him to gain som pounds.

  14. What do you think we need to draft other than RB ?

  15. I think go with maybe soliai dt/nt from utah with first pick in 4th. only really one dt better then him an i dont think soliai will be available by 2nd 4th.. soliai to go with macdonald would be 2 solid dline picks.. then late 4th maybe add guard, safety or corner. figure send 3rd 4th for jackson if that does go through.. then maybe go guard with 2nd 4th.. jackson for 3rd and 4th 4 go runningback all depends how 4th falls but i would try to grab soliai quick in the 4th.. would be solid fit at nt to go with franklin. rotate the 2 could be nice middle of line.

  16. RB???

  17. Sign Smiley too. Can’t have too many offensive linemen.

  18. 97. San Francisco (Compensatory Selection) — Ray McDonald, DT Florida: If his gimpy knee is healthy and he keeps on working in the weight room, he could be one of the draft’s biggest steals. He’s not a space-eater and he has to get much stronger, but his quickness, even with the injuries, is top-shelf and should be a great interior pass rusher as long as he’s not considered a number one anchor-type in the middle.

  19. i wouldnt look at a rb until last 4th round pick or 5th round pick.. its not a major need.. it would be a nice thing to have but i think people are over looking how robinson could be.. last year was his first in the position an in certain games you could see he had talent to be a runner but didnt show it alot b/c he wasnt all that sure if he was doing everything right. give him another year to see what he’s got never know he could surprise some.. to many people give up on guys if they dont blow everyone away in there first year.. then there is always the non drafted players that you have to look at. if im not mistaken no one has signed hicks so if he signs the restricted offer sheet he’s still ours for another year.. then next years draft if some juniors comes out could be an extremely talented running class.. and could always grab 2nd/3rd round back an go to a 2 back system to take carries off gore an lengthen his career….



  22. I know we might night draft another receicer. However Aundre Allison will be a mistake not to draft. He will give a spark to our return game. Also he has the potential to be a star. Trust me on this one.

  23. PA niners fan too! DID you see stanleys feet in the footage? Blocking quick quys off the corner is cake for him, and it seems like he can hold back rushers standing upright. Thats whats up. No RB’s, agree with mike about Robinson, he likes to truck people and hes smart, and has the ability to run many trick plays as an ex quarteback. Not to mention his superb special teams play. Hill was an awesome pick, just has that niners running style.

  24. we drafted jason hill in the third,our last third round pick never reached the field last year as a receiver only as a kick returner and before that was brandon loyd.as long as hill doesnt end up like these receivers,we will be ok.

  25. and ray mcdonald is an ok pick as long as he can stay healthy.

  26. Pittman or bush is next…RB is a need…take load off GORE..no Hicks an we need a stronger runner than Hicks was..goalline…dont wanna see anymore 4th an 1z…an we cant get it…need another RB for help…Bush or Pittman would b a steal…if stay healthy

  27. MacDonald is 280lbs and getting BIGGER! He will be a DE!! A good one too!! Great pick!…….BTW, Who said LB?!?! LOL!! 300lb linebacker with two knee surgeries..ha ha ha he he he ha ha he he ha ha…i needed that laugh!!!!!!! THANKS

  28. Darrell Jackson-WR- Seahawks Apr. 28 – 4:27 pm et

    Darrell Jackson is currently in San Francisco.

    Jackson is probably taking a physical and might be talking about a new contract. Expect this trade to be announced later Saturday night.
    Source: Seahawks Insider Blog
    Related: 49ers

    Darrell Jackson-WR- Seahawks Apr. 28 – 12:20 pm et

    The 49ers and Seahawks have reportedly agreed to a trade that will send WR Darrell Jackson to San Franscisco in exchange for a fourth-round pick, according to the Washington Post’s Mark Maske.

    The Niners are getting a lot of production for a cheap price; The Seahawks clearly don’t think much of Jackson to deal him within the division. He will immediately be San Francisco’s top receiver and a boon to Alex Smith, but his stats could suffer while playing for a worse offense.
    Source: Washington Post

  29. Again, Robinson, son!!! He runs like a fullback, and as an insane option QB he can hold onto the ball. Plus after Gore pounds em up the middle, and we spread the D backs with our newly aquired recieving core, Robinson might just break a few.

  30. Maybe a DT, DE, CB and a WR/KR I was upset at first that we traded away our 2nd and missed out on jarret and rice but we made out good and we received another 3rd which got us mcdonald which was a major come up, hill can yall imagine the touchdowns he’s going to get us and on reverse plays, I’m glade we got a 1st back for 08 because when we traded ours I was really upset and it wasn’t looking good.

  31. is ray mcdonald our new frank gore?2 knee surgeries with good productivity.

  32. Not gonna spread anything out when it comes to 3rd an 1 4th an 1…short goalline…we couldnt get it done last year..stopped 2 many times…need a Bush or a Pittman…an also a better compliment to Gore

  33. Robinson coo but if Bush or Pittman there for us n the 4th..y not grab em

  34. Vernon wont back up the backs on the goaline?? I do believe he missed most of the season. They didn’t start giving Robinson the goaline handoffs until Vernon was out. Not to mention Robinson’s ability to leap over the line. I think also that our new nose tackle might help a bit in that department. Also Gore fumbled a few. Good point though; do any runners still out there have that goaline strength? If not then I say forget it.

  35. Still think we need to find a pure pass rusher, anybody got any ideas?

  36. This guy wont be an outside linebacker. he runs a 4.8 dash and that is way tooo slow for an outside linebacker. THE olbs the 9ers have are soo underated. Lawson, TBC, roddrick green (most underated olb we have, fucking that guy had 4 sacks in 5 games will little playing time), and 9ers have harlson from last years draft. Who else am i forgetting for the olb?

  37. With 5+ speed and a big body he WILL NOT be an OLB. The people that write for this site and post the videos are not only ignorant about football but sorry excuses forfans as well. Those Derek Smith and Harris Videos were produced by ignorant assholes

  38. It’s not a priority, but another RB wouldn’t hurt. If Bush is around at 135 or 147 I think he would be worth the shot. This guy was a sure-fire first rounder before the injury.

    How about finding a #3 QB that can eventually take over for Dilfer as backup? I would love to see Leak or Zabransky, both would be great guys to have in the lockerroom and would likely be around in the 6th…or if we are lucky one might be available as an undrafted FA

  39. I say get bush he is a beast if you saw him play before the injury… the kid runs people over

  40. hopfuly willis gets us pumped up like ray lewis does for the ravens.we got good linebackers now with,pimp daddy cain,brandon moore,patrick willis ,manny lawson….what we need now is a huge mathafacka “d”tackle in the center to eat up the offensive tackles for our play making linebackers.i hhhhhate dallas i wanted us to draft spencer.

  41. does anyone know if the runningback from fresno state got draften yet?

  42. Naw that kid hasn’t got drafted yet… he would be a possibility in the 5th instead of gettin bush in the 4th… that kid is strong I went to a couple fresno state games… bulldozer ya digg

  43. darrell jackson passed his physical so the trade should go down by tommorows continuation of the draft. just as long as the shithawks go through with the trade.

  44. good first day i hope we pull the trigger on bush…he would be great in goalline carries…he moves around really well and he is 250 lbs….not to mention a first rd talent…great value in the fourth plus atlanta will not let him get by them, petrino loves him…all in all thought it was an interesting day to say the least liked our picks just a little unsure about our last pick dont know to much about him compared to other guys i liked that were still on the board…jason hill was one of my favorite players in this whole draft great pick in the third…is there any first day grades out there yet

  45. i read that Nolan said he really is targeting 6 specific guys tomorrow…I wouldnt mind some of them being Bush RB, tanard jackson CB, Paul soliai DT, Allison WR, Atkins DE, and Marcus Thomas DT…what do you guys think

  46. ‘d’ tackle from fresno state louis leonard,jay moore,o.g manny ramerez,h.b blades,w.r.-matt stratton

  47. dave ball from new hampshire, shattering jerry rices record in division IAA for career tds with-50.

  48. GREG I would say the same BUSH,MARCUS THOMAS, LOuis Leonard a OG or C in the end of the 4th.

  49. Raiders just grabbed Michael Bush with the 1st pick in the 4th round. Niners are up in 3 picks!!

  50. Michael Bush gone first pick in 4th

  51. Marcus Thomas maybe here…i also like Tanard Jackson FS/CB from Syracuse….or Antonio Pittman,David Irons some names still availible

  52. aight we’re on the clock….everyone wake up lol

  53. OUR TURN!!

  54. Niners select Jay Moore DE Nebraska!!! Good pick!!!

  55. Its OFFICIAL!! Niners trade for Darrell Jackson is complete!! He’s ours!!

  56. JAy Moore…what a great pick…another steal and we just got darrwll jackson

  57. Good depth we should get Marcus THomas with our next 4th. I think that’s not that big of a risk. If he would of stayed out of trouble he would of been a 1st. Get Wright RB FResno State with our last 4th

  58. Good Pick !!! This absolutely shows me Nolan is focused on Defense. Also some of these picks will upgrade our special teams immediately. If we can walk away with a good Dlineman, Aundrae Allison or David Clowney, and a productive RB I will be thrilled.

  59. […] 49ers Select at Ray MacDonald at 97 The 97th pick overall, the comp pick the 49ers received for the loss of Julian Peterson, they pick Ray McDonald DE/DT, […] […]

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