Thomas doesn't have to go very far to continue his football career. Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Solomon Thomas was a name that rose up draft boards throughout the entire 2017 NFL Draft process. He has the potential to completely change a defense’s pass rush and the San Francisco 49ers were happy to take him with the No. 3 overall pick in the draft.

Last season with the Stanford Cardinal, Thomas ended up recording 61 total tackles to go along with 8.5 sacks and a forced fumble. Thomas will be asked to help fix a defensive line that was desperate for help last season. He will also team up with last year’s first-round pick, DeForest Buckner, who had a very successful rookie season.

John Lynch is making it clear that he is prioritizing the defense in the draft. Many thought that San Francisco would consider taking a quarterback in the first round, but obviously, that didn’t end up happening.

Lance Zierlein of NFL.com broke down the bottom line for Thomas and it should excite 49ers’ fans.

“Explosive defender who combines strength, quickness, and a muscle-car motor to drive him around the field making play after play. Has the hands and feet to be a quick-win specialist and the size to fit as a 4-3 or 3-4 defensive end who can reduce inside for pass-rush downs. He has all the athletic traits to become a high-impact player and possesses more than enough skill and talent to believe he will continue to elevate his game as a pro. Thomas has the potential to become the best defender from this draft class and a future all-pro.”

All of that being said, expect to see Thomas become a cornerstone of the San Francisco defense. He will end up making the 49ers very happy that they made the decision to draft him.

Do you think drafting Solomon Thomas with the No. 3 overall pick was the right decision for the 49ers? If not, who do you think they should have drafted?

MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
QUIZ: Name every member of the Stanford Cardinal to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft

Since 1941, the Stanford Cardinal have sent 23 players to the pros in the first round of the NFL draft. How many can you name?

Clue: Year-Draft Number-Position-Team

 

Score:
0/25
Time:
6:00
1941 - 3 FB - CHI
Norm Standlee
1942 - 3 HB - PHI
Pete Kmetovic
1942 - 10 QB - CHI
Frankie Albert
1954 - 1 QB - CLE
Bobby Garrett
1957 - 3 QB - SFO
John Brodie
1969 - 16 WR - SFO
Gene Washington
1971 - 1 QB - NWE
Jim Plunkett
1972 - 6 T - HOU
Greg Sampson
1972 - 10 LB - MIN
Jeff Siemon
1978 - 6 WR - GNB
James Lofton
1978 - 10 T - NYG
Gordon King
1981 - 19 T - NWE
Brian Holloway
1982 - 7 RB - MIN
Darrin Nelson
1983 - 1 QB - BAL
John Elway
1988 - 23 RB - CHI
Brad Muster
1992 - 8 T - ATL
Bob Whitfield
1992 - 9 RB - CLE
Tommy Vardell
1993 - 22 DB - SDG
Darrien Gordon
2003 - 26 T - SFO
Kwame Harris
2012 - 1 QB - IND
Andrew Luck
2012 - 24 G - PIT
David DeCastro
2015 - 13 T - NOR
Andrus Peat
2016 -28 G - SFO
Joshua Garnett
2017 - 3 - DE - SF
Solomon Thomas
2017 - 8 - RB - CAR
Christian McCaffrey
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