49ers announce new coaching staff

The 49ers just officially announced the hiring of its new coaching staff. Here it is:


Geep Chryst                          Offensive Coordinator

Ronald Curry                          Wide Receivers

Chris Foerster                        Offensive Line

Adam Henry                           Wide Receivers

Steve Logan                          Quarterbacks

Tom Rathman                        Running Backs

Tony Sparano                        Tight Ends

Eric Wolford                           Assistant Offensive Line

D.J. Boldin                             Offensive Assistant



Eric Mangini                           Defensive Coordinator

Scott Brown                           Defensive Line

Tim Lewis                              Secondary

Clancy Pendergast                 Linebackers

Jason Tarver                          Senior Defensive Assistant/Linebackers

Ejiro Evero                             Defensive Assistant

Aubrayo Franklin                    Defensive Assistant

Mick Lombardi                       Defensive Assistant


Special Teams

Thomas McGaughey Jr.         Special Teams Coordinator

Richard Hightower                  Assistant Special Teams

And here’s a statement from head coach Jim Tomsula: “Our staff is a collection of passionate coaches who have wide-ranging experience at every level of the game. This is a group of talented communicators who take great pride in helping players maximize their abilities. Throughout the staff you see bright, high-energy coaches who enjoy taking a hands-on approach to teaching the game. We are all looking forward to getting to work.”

This article has 122 Comments

  1. While I’m not exactly thrilled with the HC, OC and DC (though I’m happy to wait and see how they go), the position coaches look like a pretty strong group.

    1. Tomsula would’ve been fine if not good, if he had better OC and DC…but now, it looks like the post Seifert, pre-Harbaugh years all over again..sorry Mooch!

  2. I’m not as worried about the talent on the team realizing its potential with the new position coaches as I am about Tomsula, Chryst, and Mangini utilizing that talent correctly.

  3. Grant… Why are my posts not showing up? I didn’t cuss,ale fun of anyone personally or cross a line.
    The last thing I asked was did you ever play sports? Is that a reason to get blocked if that’s the case? Idk whats going on.

  4. Harbaugh’s coaching staff was, generally, highly regarded. Haven’t heard a word, yet, about this staff but I have my doubts. Hope I’m wrong.

  5. Is this the typical number of coaches on an NFL staff?
    How fluid are the job descriptions? Could Sparano and or Logan have significant input to the offensive game plan? For that matter does anyone know how and who put the game plans together on most NFL teams?

    1. Maiocco: “Harbaugh’s staff had 12 offensive assistants and six on defense.
      Tomsula’s staff has nine offensive coaches and eight on defense.”

      1. B2W, I can see a rationale. The offense didn’t get it done with the extra bodies — “too many cooks”? — and the new defense has a lot to live up to.

  6. It’s a staff with question marks but also with a lot to prove. Kinda like when players are in their last year of contract and have to play lights out to earn a new deal. I see that in these guys. Proof will be week one.
    Now it’s time to take aim at Mr. Control freak, Trent Baalke. He needs to have an A+ in free agency and the draft!

  7. “Throughout the staff you see bright, high-energy coaches who enjoy taking a hands-on approach to teaching the game. We are all looking forward to getting to work.”

    I see York/Baalke fingerprints on this statement. The underlying message in the entire seems to come down to the word “teach.” “Teaching” is a reoccurring theme that will likely continue throughout the season. The only problem with the statement is that it comes over as a dig at Harbaugh and Co.
    Maybe winning was not enough for the forlorn Org pre Harbaugh and if that is the case with the FO so be it, but stop trying to feed me the “teach” theme until I see the how it pans out after the 2015 season.

    1. Harbaughs problem was that it was day in day out compete,win,compete, win. That’s a great overall philosophy but over an entire year it wears on people’s moral. That was his downside.Pro players have to see the light at the end of the tunnel where they are getting better and learning new things. These things help them be better pros while trying to win at the same time.

      1. Prime,
        Are you implying that the team became weary of winning thereby losing their moral?

        Do you really think players like Gore, Willis, and Justin Smith who felt the awful pangs of losing through the dark age grew weary of the daily grind it took to finally make them winners?

        Players want to win, period, and Jim Harbaugh created that culture, period.
        If York and Baalke try to lead anyone away from that fact by making subtle remarks to convince the Faithful that Harbaugh’ flaw was not being a “teacher” that’s on those that choose to believe it. I don’t.

        1. Not at all, just that Harbaughs approach of competing lost the essence of teaching as well. It’s clear York thought the players were not being utilized to their max potential.
          I loved JH’s approach but with that comes the result of wearing people down. It was 4 years and rumours of the lockeroom being disconnected to JH were obviously apparent.

          1. Prime,
            I would venture that the team would much rather wear down by winning as opposed to wearing down by losing.

            If you are referring to wearing down because of going deep into the playoffs three years in a row that would make sense.

            1. Why can’t Tomsula win with an approach to teaching the fundamentals and skills requiried to win?
              It seems a lot of people have already decided that Tomsula and this staff cannot do the things Harbaugh did. I say let’s wait til week one and see how well prepared the players are and how well they play over the regular season.
              Nobody wins on paper!

              1. Prime,
                The teaching angle is good when dealing with a very young and inexperienced roster but this is a veteran team that knows what it takes to win.

                My only hope for Tomsula is that he has the same luck with a very good team that is handed to him like Seifert had when he was handed Walsh’ team.

              2. The teaching angle was just a buzz word for Jed along with his winning with class phrase. Every coaching staff teaches, it’s what they do. What Jed is referring to most likely is that he didn’t like what Harbaugh was teaching. Meanwhile all Harbaugh and his staff did was teach the team well enough to win and go to three straight NFCCG’s and a SB.

                I like a number of the position Coaches on this staff. Good football men with a lot of experience, but at the most critical positions on the staff, we have the least experienced option (Tomsula) leading the least desired options (Chryst and Mangini).

                Yes we have no choice but to wait and see what they do, but looking at this list right now, we have clearly taken a major step back at the most important positions on the staff, all due to the owner and GM not being able to curb their egos and figure out a way to make it work with a guy who made them relevant again.

          2. Speaking of the locker room being disconnected, did anyone else catch this tweet from Eric_Branch yesterday?

            “Heard from #49ers player who thinks changes to coaching staff will hurt team in 2015: “Everyone will see soon enough,” he said.”

            1. I often wonder how reporters are gettin these athletes to snitch..or they just volunteering info just for the hell of it..all these quotes from anonymous sources from any team..Quote like that doesn’t represent everyone views in the locker room..but it will spin that way..for the sake of sensationalism..The story can write itself and take on a life of its on..if even a fraction of it is true..

            2. My guess is this player is far from the only one who feels this way. These guys aren’t stupid and know everything we do and more about these Coaches. They’ve also seen the whole thing play out from the rumors of discontent, to the ridiculous PC to introduce Tomsula. If the locker room isn’t 100% behind the Coaches it’s over before you start.

              1. All it took to start rumors that Harbaugh was having locker room trouble was for Jed to try to trade Harbaugh and then let it be known, using pet national reporters, that Harbaugh wouldn’t be back for 2015 as the 2014 season was getting underway. That scenario will cause trouble in any locker room.

              2. Possibly but..like I said.one guy doesn’t represent everyone..Disgruntled player or a guy on his way out..Probably feels that way more than likely..Brooks pops into my head for some reason…but of course not everyone is gonna like it..A locker room isnt equal.lol..Too many personalities for it to be..

    2. Prime I respectfully disagree. These are grown men, not kids. Their paycheck is a reflection of them getting better or worse. If I have a rookie, I can see that. We have a team full of vets. Coaches shouldn’t have to pet vets on the back. And you speak of that light – we were 5yds away from walking out the other side of that tunnel. There’s not much more you can ask for out of that coaching staff.

      1. KY says “Coaches shouldn’t have to pet vets on the back”

        You bet they do. That is if you want them to buy into your program and lead it. A pay cheque won’t do that day in and day out.

        1. Justin Smith isn’t looking for a darn pat on the back. He doesn’t need it, nor does any other vet. They want a ring – that is motivation. A pat on the back means nothing in the NFL.

    3. Harbaugh did a pretty good job at teaching the team how to win, which apparently wasn’t enough for Jed. Three NFCC’s and a SB appearance in four years. A new stadium made possible by Harbaugh’s run and sold out PSL’s (or whatever name the team uses for them) to pay for that stadium. The scary thing is that Jed seems to think that he is responsible for the teams success. If Harbaugh had arrived a few years earlier they may have had the momentum to keep the team in the city.

      1. “A new stadium made possible by Harbaugh’s run and sold out PSL’s (or whatever name the team uses for them) to pay for that stadium.”
        ~ BigP

        I mentioned this a few days after Harbaugh’ “mutual” agreement to leave. York and Baalke never gave credit or reference on how Harbaugh’ winning culture gave the Org the impetus to build a new stadium.

        But karma can be a b@#$2 and now the Org has to face the fact that their new stadium is a oven roaster during the summer and fans will wilt in the heat.
        Plus the stadium looks like an erector set and has no soul. Maybe the new coaching staff has a chance to change that but if they can’t it will be interesting to see how many fans show up for the preseason and regular season game come 2016.

        1. I love the whole karma is a “b” line.lol.Got rid of Alex..Karma is a b..Got rid of Harbaugh..Karma is a b…So God wants us Niners fans to suffer? Then again losing three straight championship games u may be right.haha.Funny those guys were at the helm of those losses hmmmm……let me stop.lol

          1. Karma is working fine for Alex and it will work out fine Harbaugh as well. We’ll see how much karma works out for the ‘good ol’ boy’s’ York and Baalke soon enough.

            1. I hear ya..That’s the beauty of it..Tomsula and staff get a chance to prove themselves. cause at the end of the day Harbaugh coached his way out of town..Michigan avatar eh?…interesting lol.

      2. BigP,

        Well said and I couldn’t agree more. The fact Jed said his difference in philosophy with Harbaugh went back a few years tells me he does think he knows more than he does, which is a recipe for disaster going forward.

  8. On another subject. How does the 9ers cap look for next year? I’ve heard the cap is going up 10 mill. With J. Smith retiring, R. McDonalds release if the 9ers do’nt resign any of their FA’s where will we be cap wise?

    1. Or he could be tipping his hand on who he is retaining as far as there free agents go. I think you are dead set on believing that there is no way he will take a Wr in rnd 1.. There is way too much more time before the draft even arrives. Let free agency play out before coming to those conclusions.

    2. You need to read more closely, this is not new info:

      “You look league-wide, it’s been a tricky position for a lot of teams this year,” 49ers general manager Trent Baalke told CSNBayArea.com before the final game of the season

      They were generic comments made near the end of a season in which they suffered a lot of injuries. He’s not tipping his hand by making comments like this in December.

      1. I like reading Jason Hurley’s take on the 49ers cap. He goes into a lot more detail than I’ve been able to find elsewhere, i.e. overthecap.com. His discussions typically include most or all of the implications. For example, with Brooks I realized that a post June 1 release would create substantial 2015 cap savings ($4.7 million), but I didn’t realize that he would still be on the books for a $3.1 million dead money hit in 2016. Now, I’m thinking that if they feel his attitude has changed, they should maybe try to negotiate a much lower salary rather than go directly to an outright release or trade. If he refuses then move him out.

            1. But as you said, only if they think his attitude has turned around.

              IMO he was upset because he knew the lack of snaps would trigger de-escalators in his contract again.

              1. Good point about the de-escalators. It looks like it was a $2.5 million reduction in 2015 base salary due to not reaching performance requirements.

              2. Grimey

                I was trying to put into words what you just said about the de-escalators….I think that a couple more free-agents got bit by this also…I totally agree

          1. BTW: I’m still steamed that the RayMac release will result in dead money of $4.6 million in 2015. I doubt that this was a move that Paraag and Baalke supported. Looks more like a Jed “knee jerk” reaction.

            1. Strictly a PR move. Given what had gone on with Ray Rice, AD, and Greg Hardy, there would’ve been a media firestorm if they hadn’t.

              1. Not sure I agree. If I recall he really wasn’t accused of anything; it just didn’t look good given the problems in the NFL in general and specifically the 49ers.

                Why not just sit him for the rest of the 2014 season to make the PR point. Then after a couple of months look to trade him if possible. It looks like they didn’t consider alternatives that could have resulted in less of a dead money hit if one at all. Given how analytical Marathe is, I suspect he wasn’t on board with the move, hence my reasoning that it was a Jed York knee jerk reaction.

              2. It was definitely a knee jerk reaction seeing as how no charges were actually filed, but I understand why they did it given the climate around the NFL.

              3. While the release of McDonald has dead money of $4.6 million, the team is still saving $$ against the 2015 cap.

              4. True, but they get no production from the money that they’re spending. Hopefully the young guys make up the difference.

              5. I don’t think they had much of a choice in regards to McDonald. They have to take a stand at some point to show the other players there are consequences for your actions. They take a dead money hit, but save money against the cap. The fact they have other guys on the roster to take his place plays a factor as well.

              6. Rocket:

                Like I asked above, why not sit him for the rest of the 2014 season to make the PR point. Then after the season, try to trade him or find some other way to lessen or eliminate the dead money. It just seems to me that there was a better way to handle this situation and still prove the point.

              7. Cubus,

                There was no way to do it that was going to save them much money and they certainly weren’t going to find a trade partner given his recent history. I think sitting him would have been fine, but I also don’t see a problem with cutting him given he was likely told he was on a short leash and got himself in trouble again. Accountability is important and for other players watching, it was iimperative they make a strong statement.

              8. They were also planning to lay the moral blame on the “mutually” departed Harbaugh a few weeks later. They were playing capture the flag.

  9. Hey Jack,

    You chart plays. What do you make of the decline in Play action drop backs from 2012-2014? Is there a correlation between that and Kap’s effectiveness?

    1. Jack: Adding to Grimey’s question, recall that we briefly discussed how effective the “fake” play action play QB keepers, which CK ran during the NFCCG against the Seahawks, were. I was wondering why we didn’t see more of that last season.

    2. I think the decline in play action can be traced back to the decline in rush attempts, and yes it hurt Kaepernick’s effectiveness. Play action helps to define the reads.

      1. “Play action helps to define the reads.”

        Would appreciate it if you would explain how it does that or point me to an article I could read. Thanks.

        1. I found this article over on “Smart Football”, with the title ““A very wise coach once told me, ‘If you really want play-action, you better pull a guard’” — Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III agree”. Ironically, that title is a quote from Greg Roman.


          From the article: “if you’re a linebacker or safety and you see a pulling guard, you basically can’t help but tell yourself: “It’s a run.” “

      2. Which begs the question, why go away from that? If teams are stacking the box against the run, isn’t the natural counter to that play-action passing?

        It seems Harbaugh and Roman(and Geep?) thought they were better off spreading the field and passing than sticking to their proven formula. Maybe the new staff goes back to that? More pistol maybe? I’m curious.

        1. It also seems like they actively chose to go away from what made them effective in 2012, rather than being forced by defenses to change their game plans.

        2. They weren’t running the ball well which hurts play action, and the injuries to the tight ends really set the offense back. The Harbaugh passing offense kinda revolves around that position.

          1. So it’s more their own ineffectiveness and injury rather than the defense forcing them to change what they do.

            Also they used more 3 and 4 WR sets but it seems like they mostly passed out of those sets, and the offense was very predictable in this manner. Do you think they could have more success spreading the field to run?

            BTW I had to work a lot during the football season and didn’t watch as closely as I have in previous years.

              1. Awesome breakdown Hammer. Thanx. It’s good to know my eyes and intuition aren’t completely off.

                Any inkling as to what the new staff will do? (Besides just run the Baalke ;)

              2. I hope Chryst goes back to what they did in 2011 and early 2012. Pound the ball and then play action off it.

              3. Me too. And hopefully remain balanced in all formations and personnel groupings.

                Also I hope to never see that QB sweep ever again.

  10. Saw this on Matt Maiocco’s chat this afternoon. Thought I would pass it along since the subject was discussed briefly early in this thread.

    @hukester Matt. Do you know the morale of the team following all coaching changes?

    MM: It’s quite good — certainly better than the fan base, from what I can gather. I know how a lot of players felt about Jim Tomsula, so I think there is general excitement about his elevation to the head-coaching position.

    1. That’s Matt protecting his sources. Wait for the first major stress point, or until there is a “anonymous report” that Tomsula is going to be replaced no matter what the “rest” of the season looks like.

  11. More from Matt:

    “MM: As we sit here in February, I view it was unlikely that the 49ers can reach the 12 or 13 win mark for next season. Right now, I certainly would not pick them as a playoff team, but I don’t think they’ll be among the dregs in the league, either. There is still a lot of talent on the team, so I think 49ers fans should expect them to make a charge at the playoffs. (And if they don’t make the playoffs, there’s somebody who has been quite vocal about accepting responsibility and being held accountable.) “

  12. I had a dream. Yes, I did have a dream last night. I was pointing out, to some undefined audience, that “we” (the 49ers) were on the verge of achieving a 70% win rate in one on one physical confrontations during games. The point I was making, to this unknown audience, was that winning was based on that kind of play.

    What wasn’t clear in my dream was my 49er role other than spokesman. Was I the head coach, the general manager, the owner, or the towel boy? I did speak with authority.

    Also, while it was clear “we” were in the middle of a season, I didn’t discuss the 49er won-loss record in my dream.

    1. ht. – Is it possible you were the jock strap holder? :) That is an extremely powerful position and presents a great platform to demonstrate your authority. No doubt about it if your in charge of all the Mr. Happy’s you will have their complete and undivided attention.

    1. Thanks cubus.

      A lot of tackling efficiency comes down to the individual, technique, and getting into the right position. Hopefully the new coaching structure is as much a stickler for getting those details right, and as good at coaching it, as the previous one.

      Rushing an extra man you would expect may result in fewer bodies around the ball to corral the player and make the tackle, especially past the LOS. On that basis I think it is fair to assume the team’s tackling efficiency may drops a little. I’d be interested to find out how often the Ravens rushed an extra man, though.

      1. Let’s hope not. But as htwaits posted at February 10, 2015 at 1:51 pm, Maiocco doubts the team will make the playoffs next year.

  13. “While Carroll mads stars and solid players out of unknowns, my unknowns were ignored by the previous coaching staff. I won’t stand for it anymore!” … Trent Baalke

    Otherwise known as “Teach, teach, teach!” … Jed York

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