The San Francisco 49ers announced today that they have signed arguably the best fit of their 2018 draft class in former BYU linebacker Fred Warner.
Warner, who signed a four-year rookie deal, should receive a signing bonus worth about $1,010,188, after being selected in the third round of this April’s NFL Draft (70th overall).
A 6-foot-3, 236-pounder who matriculated to BYU from San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills, Warner was the first of two third-round draft picks for the 49ers, the second being Southern Miss defensive back Tarvarius Moore (who signed on May 5).
Warner, 21, worked out at the MIKE spot for San Francisco during OTAs this week. With the Cougars, Warner started 42 out of the 49 games he played, racking up 264tackles, 32.0 tackles for loss, 6.5 sacks, seven interceptions (returning two for touchdowns), five fumble recoveries, three forced fumbles and 13 passes defensed.
Our Tommy Call wrote of Warner while analyzing the draft class: Warner was one of the better fits in the entire draft class as a complement for Reuben Foster. Warner has the speed and length you want in a modern-day NFL linebacker. His coverage skills were his best attribute at the college level, something that will prove handy to a 49ers defense that struggled in coverage in the middle of the field last season, allowing eight touchdowns to opposing tight ends. Worst case scenario? Warner uses his athleticism to make an impact on special teams right away. Best case scenario? The 49ers found their heir-apparent linebacker pairing to Navorro Bowman and Patrick Willis in Warner and Foster.
The 49ers have now signed seven of their nine picks. The only two draft picks not to sign are San Francisco’s first pick, Notre Dame offensive tackle Mike McGlinchey, and OTA star Dante Pettis, who caught all four passes sent his way on Tuesday.