SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – More college free agents made NFL rosters last year than ever before. John Madden told the KCBS morning crew he expects the trend to continue.

“There are probably more good players, but…it’s a money thing and a salary cap thing,” Madden said. “With all these camps and stuff, players go into high school better prepared, then they go into college better prepared, and then they probably come into the NFL better prepared and ready to play.”

The former coach said the salary cap is a major factor as well.

“If you use a lot of money on your top guys (in the draft), and then you take your core guys (already on the team) in the middle there, you don’t have much left at the bottom of the roster… at some point, you just don’t have any more money and you have to go on the cheap.”

The 49ers surprised many with their choice of University of Oregon running back LaMichael James as their second pick. Is he big enough to play in the NFL?

“He doesn’t have to be a workhorse; they already have their workhorse in Frank Gore. He can be a 10-12 carry guy,” Madden said. “I really like LaMichael James… Every time I saw him play at Oregon, I thought ‘this guy is something special.'” (7:20)

Listen to the John Madden segment live weekday mornings at 8:15 on KCBS All News 740 AM/106.9 FM.

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