The 49ers traded up in the fourth round to take Utah running back Joe Williams at pick 121 in the fourth round. San Francisco traded its 143rd (fourth) and 161st (fifth) picks to Indianapolis in the trade.
Who is he: Williams is an excellent athlete who ran his 40-yard dash in 4.41 seconds at the combine at 210 pounds. He had several explosive games last year at Utah, including a 333-yard, four-touchdown performance against UCLA and a 222-yard effort against Indiana in the Foster Farms Bowl at Levi’s Stadium. Williams “retired” for a time last season, missing four games. When other running backs got injured, he returned to the team and was explosive and effective, scoring 10 touchdowns over that span.
How he fits: The 49ers were lacking an explosive, change-of-pace runner, which Williams can be. He’ll likely compete with Tim Hightower and DuJuan Harris to be Carlos Hyde’s main backup. Williams took a circuitous route to Utah, getting kicked out of UConn in 2012 for credit card theft. That he decided to step away from the Utah program for a month last year raises additional character concerns.