Transition to Baalke starts smoothly for Niners

Trent Baalke took over control of personnel for the San Francisco 49ers with five weeks to go until the NFL draft but there isn’t going to be a radical change in anything being done in the organization now that Scot McCloughan is out.

The new man made that much clear when he met with reporters on Friday for the first time, according to Daniel Brown of the San Jose Mercury News. Baalke was the Niners’ director of player personnel for three seasons under McCloughan and had a hand in a lot of moves made by the club to get to this point where they now sit less than four weeks away from having the 13th and 17th picks in the first round in what is a critical draft for the franchise with the NFC West now wide open following the retirement of Kurt Warner in Arizona.</p>

"I can't reiterate enough — Scot is very good at what he does, and he's been very good at helping me grow as a professional,” Baalke said. “And I think by the way he operated and the openness with which he operated, is certainly going to help us moving forward. Because it wasn't like he had the key to the safe. He was very open with me."

When it comes to the most important position on the field, Baalke backs former No. 1 overall pick Alex Smith over David Carr, the other former No. 1 overall pick the Niners recently signed as a veteran backup.
"Right now we're very comfortable with where we're at,” Baalke said. “And that's where we're going to leave it."

For what it’s worth, Baalke said you can eliminate San Francisco from the Pacman Jones sweepstakes, if there are sweepstakes for Pacman. His agent told the Associated Press Friday that the 49ers were in the mix along with the Detroit Lions and Cincinnati Bengals.

Starting Sunday, Baalke will travel with coach Mike Singletary on a three-day scouting trip where they will presumably look at some offensive linemen to consider with one or both of their first-round picks. That is a great area of need for the team.

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