(CBS) What was it like in the NFL’s most surprised war room Thursday night?
Rookie general manager John Lynch and the 49ers were thrilled when the Bears made their shocking move to draft quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, that choice coming after a major trade sent three extra picks from Chicago to San Francisco for the Bears to move up from No. 3 to the 49ers’ spot at No. 2.
In a lengthy story from MMQB.com, the details of an eventful Thursday night share the surprise many felt when the Bears elected to trade up for Trubisky.
The Bears and 49ers had agreed to make a trade if the Browns didn’t select the player Chicago general manager Ryan Pace desired, MMQB.com reported. Pace assured Lynch that San Francisco would be pleased with the selection, though he refused to acknowledge it was Trubisky. The 49ers were left in the dark, with Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett, Stanford defensive lineman Solomon Thomas and Alabama linebacker Reuben Foster atop their draft board.
Garrett went first overall, after the Browns contemplated taking Trubisky. The Bears and 49ers agreed to their trade, with Chicago sending two third-rounders and then an additional pick — the fourth-round slot, No. 111 overall — after San Francisco received another inquiry regarding its second pick.
The 49ers were in the dark about whom the Bears would select. They were prepared to take Foster third if Chicago chose Thomas. A conversation between Lynch and 49ers executive Paraag Marathe occurred as the Bears went on the clock, MMQB.com reported.
“Man, who do they want?” Lynch said. “Gotta be Solomon, right?”
“Call me crazy,” Marathe said. “But I think it’s Trubisky.”
“Then why’d they go get (free-agent quarterback Mike) Glennon?” Lynch said.
Soon enough, Trubisky’s name came across the board. The 49ers were elated, quickly calling Thomas and making him their selection with the third pick.
Foster would fall all the way to the 31st pick, where the 49ers used a pick acquired from the Bears to move up and take him near the end of the first round. Lynch and his new team finished the first day of the draft with two of the top three players on their draft board.
The Bears came away with the quarterback they so desired.
“If we want to be great, you just can’t sit on your hands,” Pace said Thursday. “There are times when you’ve got to be aggressive, and when you have conviction on a guy, you can’t sit on your hands. I just don’t want to be average around here — I want to be great, and these are the moves you have to make.
“The most important position in all of sports is quarterback, and I don’t think you’re ever a great team until you address the position and you address it right. I think everybody should respect that. We’re addressing the quarterback position, we’re being aggressive with that position because it’s the most important position in sports.”