26 Top Prospects to Attend 2015 NFL Draft

While Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota have decided to stay at home with family during the 2015 NFL Draft, 26 other top prospects will be attending the event, the league announced on Tuesday.

Niners Daily takes a look at the players confirmed to attend this year's draft at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University in Chicago.

 

Twenty-six top prospects will be attending the 2015 NFL Draft at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University in Chicago.

The  draft is set to kick off on Thursday, April 30th. Notable prospects attending the event include defensive players like USC defensive end Leonard Williams, Florida pass-rusher Dante Fowler Jr., Nebraska edge-rusher Randy Gregory as well as offensive impact players such as West Virginia wide receiver Kevin White, Louisville wideout DeVante Parker, and Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon.

Several analysts from around the web have the 49ers set to pick a defensive player with the 15th overall pick.

A player that some analysts have going to the 49ers in their mock drafts is Arik Armstead. A dominant defensive end from Oregon, Armstead is considered by ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. as a player with "a lot of potential for the future" who will need time to adjust to the pro-level of play in the NFL. The 6-foot-7, 292-pound lineman could be an impact player for coach Jim Tomsula's defensive line should the 49ers elect to make him the franchise's first-round pick.

Another popular mock-draft selection is Washington nose tackle Danny Shelton. According to Charley Casserly of NFL.com, the 340-pound prospect would "immediately improve the 49ers run defense." Shelton, an academic All-American in 2014, has drawn comparisons to Houston Texans nose tackle Vince Wilfork

San Francisco's signing of Torrey Smith in free-agency has lessened the team's need for a wide receiver in the first round of the draft,

but if a top-tier player like Parker or UCF wideout Breshad Perriman were still available, the team would have a decision to make. In February, NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah said that Parker would be a "home-run pick" for the 49ers. Perriman recently shot up many analysts' draft boards after clocking an unofficial 4.25 40-yard dash at his pro day. 

Although the draft won't take place in New York this year, prospects like Gordon are excited for the opportunity to attend the draft.

"It's a blessing," Gordon said on NFL Network. "It's an opportunity of a lifetime. I'm excited (that) I got invited and have a chance to be in Chicago for the draft."

Enjoy photos of 49ers draft picks from over the years:

Not all of San Francisco's top choices over the years make it to New York, but most of them do get to hold up their first pro jerseys before the cameras.

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