Rebuilding the 49ers — Part 1: Choosing the right GM and head coach

Stop stalling, Jed. Hire Eliot Wolf. Now.

Wolf is the no-brainer choice for the 49ers GM job. He comes from a first-class organization — the Packers. And, he’s the son of maybe the greatest general manager ever — Ron Wolf. All of the father’s protégés are excellent. Hiring one to run a team in 2017 is equivalent to hiring a Bill-Walsh’s protégé to coach a team in 1992. You can’t miss.

Don’t miss, Jed.

According to Mike Silver of, York may hit the bull’s-eye. On Monday, Silver tweeted that Wolf is a leading contender for the 49ers GM job along with Brian Gutekunst — another member of the Packers’ front office.

This is good news, 49ers fans. Either Gutekunst or Wolf would be a fine hire, although Wolf would be better. He’s the rising star in the Packers organization. He’s the prodigy. He’s the one who’s been helping Green Bay draft players since he was 11.

I assume York will hire Wolf soon. I assume York won’t blow it this time. So for the next few days, I’m coming out with a four-part series explaining how Wolf might begin to rebuild the 49ers. This is Part 1.


Click here to read the rest of my Thursday column.

This article has 296 Comments

  1. I really like this pairing and hope it comes to fruition, but hope it transpires before the 4 part mini-series goes into syndication….

    1. While I would love Wolf as GM I have little hope that the Yorks will pick him over Riddick.
      I am not a fan of Belicik coaching tree as they all look much better than they actually are due to being paired with Brady and Belicik.

      I would hope Eliot Wolf is hired and they let him pick the HC

    2. Razor,
      A nightmare scenario is the 49ers finding their GM candidate – say Wolf. Then Paraag jumps in and plays compensation hardball.

  2. Between the names that have interviewed this is the order I’d take them: Shanahan, McVay, Lynn, McDaniels. McDermot has been hired by the Bills and Joseph was never really a candidate for anyone except the Broncos.

    1. It’s Barrows opinion that McVay has that “it” factor. Says he’s able to connect and motivate players. I’d like a fountain of experiece and knowledge at DC for McVay to draw upon in times of need. Such as Phillips or Fangio….

    2. With the Rams unable to interview Shanahn the 49ers need to hire Wolf and then offer the job to KS before he has the chance to talk to the lambs.

  3. Grant,
    You are either getting smarter with age or it just seems that way to me because you and I are agreeing so much. First you get on the band wagon regarding the talent the 9ers have on defense. Now I will admit my first preference was for a defensive coach but when it became obvious that the team wasn’t going in that direction I came out in favor of Wolf and McVay. Good job, I guess its true with age comes wisdom. Now how bout a guess at QB, keep Ponder let him start the year as QB1 and trade back and draft Kizer for the future.

              1. Like alot of 49er fans, in the event Myles Garrett is taken first, I’m all for trading back. But will there be any good trade back offers?

                Last year Cleveland…
                – Gave up #2 overall and a fifth-rounder (2017).
                – Got #8, #77, #100, #8 (2017), Second rounder (2018 ).

                I’d jump at a deal like that, but I think its highly unlikely there will be offers anywhere near what the Browns got last year.

                Everyone… if Garrett was gone, what would you accept to trade back into the 7-12 range?

              2. Brodie,

                First I would try to trade Staley and pick 34 for Garoppolo. Then I would try to sign Andrew Whitworth or Matt Kallil to protect Garoppolo’s blindside.

                Then I would do your proposed trade. I would use the new lower 1st round pick on John Ross. He would give Garoppolo a reliable target in the slot and fix our return game.

  4. So Joseph’s in at Den, last I heard McDermott is almost a done deal in Buffalo, and Jags are set.

    So the likeliness that we land Shanny or McVay is starting to look very good.

    Haven’t heard much out of SD???

    What would be one of the most embarrassing scenarios is if Shanny or McVay decide just to stick it out another year with their respective teams due to it “not being the right time”, instead accepting Jeds offer

  5. If McVay has a choice between the 49ers and the Rams (with whom he has had a second interview with and who probably want him), why in heaven’s name would he ever choose the 49ers?

          1. As a former member of the Redskins put it: “Kyle bitches about everything, and then his father has to fix it. He bitches about the food in the cafeteria, he bitches about the field, he bitches about the equipment. He complains and then Mike takes care of it. Kyle is a big problem there. He is not well liked.”

            He quit on the Browns because he couldn’t get along.

            “Roddy White also blamed Shanahan for how he “mismanaged things” and “screwed up” as the offensive coordinator, which didn’t have the Falcons playing “sound football.” ”

            The 49ers should not want his dysfunction. If Kyle is hired as a head coach of the 49ers, 2016 would be remembered as the “good” year.

      1. There’s only 3 jobs left so unless Jed gets turned down, the Niners could have one of McVay, Shanahan or McDaniels. Any of the 3 would be ok with me and I can’t say I felt that way at any pointt the past two years while going through this.

  6. The more I hear about McVay, the more I like the prospect of him getting hired. Pair with an OC like McCoy or Lynn and Vrabel at DC, and I can see this team having the coaching staff needed to get the 49ers back on top in a couple of seasons.

  7. Hi Grant. This is a very, very nice article. I don’t know what Jed will do — he’s a bungler, so I have little hope for the future of the franchise. I also don’t know if the strategy you set forth is the ideal one, although it very well may be. My reason for writing is only to say that I can see you’ve grown tremendously as a sports writer, and that I think the arrow is up. You tackle key issues, offer your solutions, and don’t hold back, which is what you’ve always done, but now it’s without the sass. This is the sign of a maturing young writer. All the best, and thanks to you and your newspaper for your blog.

  8. This is pretty much only the second time I have agreed with you on anything 49ers related, Grant but damn… you hit the nail on the head. I have been saying Wolf/McVay for weeks now. To me it’s the only pairing that makes long-term sense for the team. Not only the pedigree that these two men come from but their knowledge and ability they have displayed thus far in their careers.

    Also what could be better than a GM who can puck up the phone anytime and call his father, one of the best GM’s over the last 20-years and a head coach who can do the same with his grandfather who was Bill Walsh’s right hand man and helped bring five Super Bowls to San Francisco?

    Even with all of that aside, this pairing makes me feel truly positive about the future of this team for the first time in a long time.

    Please Jed, make it happen!

  9. For me the DC is the most important cog to all this mess. Offensive minded HC is a must but the DC hire is more important. There is talent on the defense and needs leadership starting with DC to bring it out. I expect very little of offensive production regardless who the HC and OC are unless there is dramatic change at QB, RB, TE, WR. O line still needs to be up graded at C and LT. Fix the dog gone defense starting with scheme.

    1. Undercenter

      As usual, I agree with you…in this respect, I agree with both you and Grant. Thereis no one more important than our GM…and I’m crossing my fingers, toes, eyes, and whatever else I can cross for Eliot Wolf. I’m sure as can be that he has his own list of whoever he would / will choose for his HC, and I believe that Grant aced it with Kyle Shannahan or McVay for HC.

  10. A few of us were discussing this possible combination in the Eliot Wolf thread already, and I would be cautiously optimistic if it came to fruition, but to have the two most important people in your organizational structure come in at 34 and 30 is really out of the ordinary and could fail spectacularly as much as it could succeed. The situation would be similar if they hired Shanahan and Wolf, but Shanahan at least has spent a number of years in the league as an OC.

    I guess I’m in the minority again because I’d go with McDaniels as the top option with Shanny a close second. From looking at history in regards to Coaching hires, there is a clear correlation between a second time HC and success. It’s not always the case but it seems like lessons learned pay off for a second time HC.

    The Rams seem to also be high on McVay so he might just be one of the those people mature beyond his years with a clear outline for what he wants to do. The plus with McVay is that he reportedly wants to bring Phillips in as DC wherever he winds up. I’m a big Wade Phillips backer as DC.

      1. I gotta agree with u Grant, I only like McD’s if he comes with Caserio, but it’s looking like Caserio is a no, so that would only leave who the pundits keep pushing, Riddick. That would be my nightmare and would spell disaster from the beginning. So it means it will probably happen.

              1. Believe me, they are so attuned to the situation, they probably have already produced a draft board to fill all the holes.

          1. “Well atleast Riddick acknowledges the roster needs a major overhaul”
            I promise there isn’t a single GM candidate that doesn’t know that about this team. When most of the fans realize it I’ve got to feel pretty safe that a professional in the business has a pretty good idea as well.

      2. I’d be OK with McDaniels if he came with Belichick and Brady cause those two are the reason people think McDaniels is worth grabbing.

        1. Wasn’t the same thing said about Gase? Gase was supposedly a byproduct of Manning’s genius and without Manning he would flop. I was a big fan of hiring Gase. He did just fine in Miami for his first year.

      3. We don’t know that Wolf and McVay could work together anymore than we know if Wolf and McDaniels could work together. I’m not completely locked in on Wolf either. I think he’d be a great hire, but I like some of the other options too, including Terry McDonough. Mood brought him up yesterday in regards to Nolan mentioning him and Gil Brandt spoke highly of him too. Really impressive resume.

          1. Every HC wants power and McDaniels was no different, but I’m guessing he has learned from his first go around and will be able to work better with the personnel side this time around. He was given a lot of responsibility by the Broncos at a young age which is a lot to handle for anybody never mind a first time HC in his mid 30’s. That’s one of the things I worry about in regards to hiring McVay.

            The key here however is that McDaniels is older and wiser now. I think it would be a mistake to ignore the fact he would come in with a wealth of experience not only from being with Belichick for so long, but from the mistakes made in his first try as HC. I also like the fact that if they hire McDaniels, they could then attempt to acquire JG and immediately start a young QB who knows the system.

            1. McDaniels seems more power hungry than most. Sees himself as the next Belichick. Likes the 49ers because there is no GM in place. Meaning he could pick his own and have power. No thanks.

              1. You are making a number of assumptions here and not allowing for the fact he has likely learned from previous mistakes.

              2. “You are making a number of assumptions here and not allowing for the fact he has likely learned from previous mistakes.”

                Now who’s making assumptions?

              3. It’s assumption based on the fact people usually learn from experience. You are making assumptions based on nothing other than what you think he is.

              4. Rocket,

                While I see your point on McD learning from his mistakes (I agree with you, it’s likely he learned from his time in Denver), CFC’s point that he was power hungry in Denver and that makes it possible he would be power hungry here (especially since there’s something of a power vacuum – my own comment) isn’t without basis.

                After all, we haven’t actually seen that he’s learned from his time in Denver, logic and the behavior of others makes you and I think McD has learned and will change, but, again, we haven’t seen that he’s changed.

                On the other hand, McD’s poor behavior performance in Denver actually happened. The idea that that should carry more weight can be legitimately argued.

              5. Grants assumption, in this case, can be said to be based upon previous performance. While your assumption is based upon the idea that he has learned from his past.
                What I find it odd, is that some people want guys with previous NFL head coaching experience, while others think of them as retreads. There is plenty of evidence to support either view.

              6. “CFC’s point that he was power hungry in Denver and that makes it possible he would be power hungry here ”

                Simply for the sake of accuracy that wasn’t me saying that. I think that was either Grant or Jack.

    1. I know they just hired Joseph, but the Broncos would be silly to let Phillips go. Joseph should focus on leading the team, and let Phillips do his thing.

      1. Phillips’ contract is up, and the indication is Joseph will continue with the same defense Phillips ran.

  11. While it’s not clear who would be the best HC fit for Wolf, Grant has written a very good article here. While Shanny and McDaniel have more experience, McVay seems to be better at motivating players going by what it out in the media.

  12. A lot of players didnt like McDaniels hope its not him if i could choose it would be ks then mcvay but either would be good with me just please dont hire Gamble or anyone who has worked with Baalke

  13. 49ers need an edge rusher and this is a deep class. But with so many needs, and likely an offensive minded HC coming in desiring some offensive skill players to be added early, I think the 49ers will probably add one in the mid rounds.

    This guy could be a good option as something of a sleeper:

      1. Mathis was PFFs #1 ranked edge defender in pass rush productivity this year before he hurt his foot and missed the rest of the season.

        I expect his stock will gain a lot of steam between now and the draft.

    1. Mathis was an underachiever until this year, but really talented for sure. It really hurt the Husky D when he went down. He’d definitely be somebody to target for a value pick on day 3.

      1. Sounds like a guy that had his eyes opened and now really wants it. If he does well at the combine and interviews I could see him making a push for day 2.

        1. He looks like an absolute menace for tackles to block.

          Thanks for the link, Scooter. Mathis seems like a great talent.

  14. I like Wolf too because it’s more than just a guy it’s a philosophy that works-draft, play drafted players,don’t overspend in FA & draft a QB every year. Once this system is in place (unlike Blake) we should have long term success.

    Grant if your talking Wolf -for QB you have to be at least thinking Brent Hundley?? Think he will be cheaper than Gorraplo because he has less visual NFL regular season snaps and they’re starting QB is younger than Brady so I think Rogers back up is more expendable then Brady’s.

  15. This would be great, but chances are we will get Jimmy Raye’s son and Mike Singletary. Jed always admired Mike Singletary for pulling down his pants, staring like a psychotic, and making no sense. Now he’s got experience with the Vikings, a team that impresses little Jed. And he wasn’t a coordinator, which means Jed gets to promote a position coach to HC again.

    If something like that happens, how many fans would finally quit?

      1. Yup, like sitting in George Seifert’s executive chair, spinning around, kicking at the desk, demanding another Hostess Pie.

      1. I meant that with the GM in place then we can start hiring the coaches with the HC obviously coming first and then he can start picking his assistants.

  16. Hey Grant, I get why you are attracted to this incestuous pedigree where blood relation projects to ability: Eliot Wold is best GM candidate because his father was Ron Wolf; Kyle Shanahan is the best OC/HC candidate because his father was Mike Shanahan; Sean McVay is the best HC option because his father was John McVay; and the Niners return to greatness because Jed York is the nephew of Eddie DeBartolo! If only there were a young Manning or Montana prodigy we could draft as the franchise QB. This is a “no-brainer” to you because you are the son of Lowell Cohn.

    But here is another perspective: Jed York does not want another strong, accomplished, veteran head coach like Jim Harbaugh who will offend York’s pride, so he seeks and finds a candidate 5 years younger than him who will be so grateful for the opportunity. And this 30 year old kid, who would probably be jealous of the vast coaching connections of Jim Tomsula, would scramble to assemble a coaching staff enticed to coach in Santa Clara because its been so good to coaching careers lately…where is the logic? Poor Sean McVay, burdened by the expectations projected because of a father’s competence and beholden to a snit like Jed. Ugh!

      1. Like Kelly he is a name many fans will like. He’s failed miserably during his first stint as a head coach, he’ll push for more power and fans will once again be hoodwinked.

        He’s a product of Brady and Belichick.

        1. It’s amazing how you can be so sure about something you don’t truly know anything about. He had 28 games as a HC and from that you’ve deciphered that he’s power hungry, part of the Belichick tree of woe and is a product of Brady and Belichick even though both have raved about him being the brains of the offensive operation.

          I don’t know how he’ll do in his second go around whether that is here or somewhere else, but I’m not going to close my mind because it didn’t work out previously. Good article here that may provide a little more insight for you:

            1. He took over during a lock out Jack. How much of his system would you guess he actually got to teach and work on with that team? They were a terrible offense before he got there and then had to start all over again with no offseason. I understand being cautious in how you look at a Coach who’s failed in a previous job, but you have to be realistic in your evaluation too.

              1. They averaged 6 points less per game with McDaniels. I understand the lockout made things difficult, but Harbaugh and Roman had no trouble with implementing their system. Good coaches can adjust.

              2. Come on Hammer! That is the weakest cherry pick of stats ever! Harbaugh walked into a ready made roster

              3. Is losing the starting QB 10 games in a lame excuse too? If so, then I don’t see many Coaches being able to live up to your standards.

          1. There’s also not a very high rate of success for guys who were bad at their first stop “suddenly figuring it out” and becoming successful.

              1. I know, I saw that article too. Problem is, none of them failed miserably like McDaniels at their first stop.

              2. “12 of the last 18 SB winning teams were led by a second time HC.”

                Vermeil – SB in Philly
                Belichick – Playoffs in Cle
                Gruden – Playoffs on Oak
                Holmgren – SB in Sea
                Dungy – Playoffs in TB
                Coughlin – Playoffs in Jax
                Fox – SB in Car
                Carroll – 2 National Championships

                The only exception is Shanahan.

              3. And many of those Coaches needed more than a year and 3 quarters to gain any measure of success in their first HC opportunity which McDaniels did not have the luxury of. There is a clear argument to be made that a second time HC is likely to have success or at least more success than they did the first time.

                I’m not all in on McDaniels and would be happy with Shanahan or McVay or even some others we haven’t talked about very much, but to write off an extremely successful young Offensive mind like McDaniels because he failed in a short stint at the age of 33 doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.

      1. He’s won with 3 different QB’s this season alone. How in the world does that lend credence to not adapting his system to the players he has?

          1. You can’t change the system every time you have to start a new QB and the system has many different variables he can work off of. He just has to put together a game plan that works to each QB’s strengths and he did that.

            1. One of the reasons McVay is considered a hot commodity is due in part to the fact that he does adjust his system to fit the personnel on offense.

              1. And that’s the first priority in hiring someone. The new guy has to be able to tailor whatever system it is to the strengths of the personnel. Chip failed miserably at that last year.

        1. What I like about McDaniels is his play calling. With 3 different QB’s he had this year, he called plays to the strength of the QB who was behind centre. Their overall scheme didn’t change, but the play calls did. That’s a great mark of an OC.

          1. I agree, Prime, and the article that Mid posted seems to provide good support for McDaniels. But the big question seems to be: is he a leader of men? The fact that he failed before doesn’t bother me that much since almost all successful coaches have failed at one point in their careers.

            But you made a great point the other day. This selection of GM and HC could easily have a ten-year time frame, so they have to get it right. Easier said than done.

            1. Maybe if McDaniels brought a strong minded defensive coordinator like Vrabel or Wade Phillips, he could let them focus on that side of the ball and he could work exclusively with the offense and special teams.
              What I like about McDaniels is he is a smart guy. He can’t go running back to NE if this doesn’t work and he will get at least 4 years to make his program work. From the ground up rebuild, he will get to select men who will have to buy into his system.

          2. McDaniels won’t be me making roster decisions this time but I’m sure he would push for Garoppolo. McDaniels didn’t communicate with his staff in Denver. That would have to change.

            My top HC choices.

            1. Shanahan
            2. McDaniels
            3. McVay

              1. I think he would push for Garoppolo. Riddick would probably do it for him. Ron Wolf traded for Favre so his son might be open to a Garoppolo trade, depending on what the Pats want in return.

                I think any GM or HC would at least consider Garoppolo. We don’t have a QB, no slam dunks in the draft, and the Skins will probably franchise tag Cousins.

    1. Around this time a year ago Ninerland was saying, “maybe Chip learned his lesson in Philly”.

      The talk track is pretty similar this year.

  17. Grant, do you think the performance of the Falcons offense against Seattle on the weekend could be pivotal to Shanahan’s chances of landing the 49ers job? Obviously a coach who can scheme to beat the Seattle defines would be highly valuable to the organisation, yes?

  18. Well, Grant, I must say that you have come up with the best scenario, so of course, Jed will not do it.

    I still think Jed will look at all the candidates, and just say that they are not slam dunk guaranteed winners, so he will go conservative and promote Gamble, hire back Chip and keep Kaep.

    Why do I think that this option will eventually become a reality? Because it is the least expensive.

      1. Now that your daddy bought that bait shop, Tomsula will want to come back. Jed will just be rectifying a mistake and keeping his word if he lets Chip return. Gamble is not terrible compared to Wolf, because Wolf is young and unproven. Kaep is heads above any replacement, especially an untested rookie.

        Interesting how that Gamble leak came out, and more interesting to hear about some one trying to change Jed’s mind. Wonder where Wormtongue fits into this enigma.

          1. Bill Walsh had 200 player tryouts before games, just to find the right players, so there is a precedent for looking everywhere for the right person.

            Chip did work on his people skills. That locker room had the right attitude and dynamics, even with a 2-14 record. That is not something you want to throw away, with no guarantee that it will be duplicated.

            I want Tomsula because he will fix the defense. He was the D line coach on the team that did not allow a 100 yard rusher for 15 games, and only one rushing TD all year.

            I would even let Jeff Garcia be the QB coach, since there is a vacancy

            The best possible acquisition to the coaching staff may be Bryant Young. He would bring class and respect.

            1. Let’s say the 9ers did all this (after reading your post of course) and made it happen–stuck with it for three years. What would you predict for the 9ers regular season record over that time period…3/45, 6/42, 9/39, 40/8???

              1. If it went 6-10, 8-8, 10-6, I would be happy

                Of course, that would be only 24-24, but it would be upwardly trending.

                I will guarantee that Tomsula’s defense would not give up 200 rushing yards each game.

              2. Jed does read these posts. He read that Nolan recommended Will McDonough, and lo and behold, now WM has an interview.

                Eddie himself admitted he lied about not reading what the media wrote. He read every word, especially Lowell’s.

    1. More reasons why I do not wants McDaniels. In order:

      Kyle Shanahan
      Sean McVay
      Anthony Lynn
      Josh McDaniels

  19. Great article on Wolf. Thanks Grant.

    But, alas, I’ve had high hopes in the past that the York’s would hire the # 1 candidate (as you say, in this case, it’s GM, Wolf/and coach Shanahan or McVay) only to have them dashed on the rocky shoals of coaching numbskulls hired by the Yorks.

    Grant, I noticed you stated: “Stop stalling, York’s, hire Wolf now.” The York’s are known for dithering around until another team snaps up their choice (Wolf) and they’re left with bottom barrel coaching candidates. Fans have begun to feel like this is done purposely.

  20. Here’s the reason I don’t get high on the draft.
    It’s coaching. Hundreds of late picks have become greats.
    Fix this coaching problem and I’ll bet whoever they draft will fit the system and excel in it.
    Get little shanny or McDaniels.
    And get the hell out of the way Jed!

  21. Interesting article, Grant, but I don’t understand what’s in it for McCloughahn and the Redskins to “facilitate this marriage.”

  22. McDaniels main issue as a HC candidate is his personality. He really struggled relating to his players and staff at Denver, he was a control freak. Many people said the same thing about Tom Coughlin, but he learned he needed to relax a bit and let people have fun.

    If McDaniels has learned the same lesson I see no reason why he shouldn’t be considered a good HC candidate. And there are a number of reports that indicate he has learned this lesson. Time will tell.

    Say what you want about his success being tied to Brady, he isn’t the first good coordinator to make themselves through having a good QB. He also made his offense look good with Cassell and Garoppolo. It didn’t work out at the Rams in his 1 year there, but that was also a lockout year. He didn’t really get a chance to install his offense properly.

    1. I think Shanahan is doing the same thing with Ryan. Both look better with good QBs.

      Wonder if they are smart enough to take Kaep, and win with him, or will they give up, and not even try.

      1. If having a good QB is the prerequisite to looking good as a coach, they’ll at best see Kaep as a stop gap.

        I don’t think any offensive minded HC comes in to the 49ers wanting to be tied to the QB of the past 3 regimes. Time to move on in my opinion.

        1. I see McVay as being smart enough to be able to utilize Kaep properly. Shanny would not even try, and McDaniels would throw him under the bus like he did with Brandon Marshall.

          1. Using Kaep properly gives you a limited offense that relies on the run to set up the pass and requires a good D to back it up.

            Shanahan used RGIII properly to good effect. Kaep is similar to RGIII in many ways.

            1. When looking at the remaining candidates I don’t think Kap is even in the conversation. If you are talking a rebuild, I mean a complete rebuild, you are going to have to draft and develop players that are versatile. With Kap, you cannot build around him because he has a very specific skill set. By keeping him, you’ve basically handcuffed the rebuilding process. I don’t see him as part of the new culture everyone keeps talking about.

              1. Kaep’s skillsets include passing for 400 yards, running for over 100 yards, mounting 4th quarter comebacks and clutch play to win games.

                Only competent HC’s are able to utilize his talents, and those are things that most HC’s covet in a QB, so instead of being handcuffed, he will be liberated.

              2. “Kaep’s skill set include passing for 400 yards, running for over 100 yards, mounting 4th quarter comebacks and clutch play to win games”

                This is not a skill set.
                Other qb’s that have thrown for over 400 yrds. Matt Schaub, Matt Cassel, Matt Flynn, Vince Young, Mike Vick, Chad Henne, Josh Freeman, Chis Weinke, Matt Leinart, Kyle Orton and on an on…. Hmmm… yeah, I guess he is comparable to those qb’s.

              3. Did those other QBs include being clutch? How many times did they mount 4th quarter comebacks? Only Vick ran for over 100 yards, and NO OTHER QB has run for 181 yards in a playoff game.

                Kaep was down 17 points in a NFCC Game, and mounted a furious comeback to win. Kaep threw for over 300 yards and ran for 66. Only Joe Montana has also done that in a playoff game.

                Compare Kaep to those other QBs if you want. I will not.

            2. Still, Shanny is taking after his padre. MS did not want Kaep, which nixed his chances before Chip was hired.

              KS will eventually land in San Diego, because he likes established QBs like Matt Ryan and Rivers.

              ANY team needs a good defense, if they want to win.

              1. Rivers is old. How many years does he have left? Two? That team will have nothing once he retires.

              2. That is why they will go full court press for Kyle. Rivers needs a QB guru before he turns into a pumpkin.

                If you studied the Charger season, they were competitive in most of their games, but kept on shooting themselves in the foot. They have been stockpiling a lot of highly drafted players, so the team does have talent.

              3. That seems likely. The only other team he’s interviewed with so far are the Rams, which is a bit surprising.

              4. Well, they had interviews with Mike Smith, Matt Patricia, Teryl Austin and Dave Toub, so Shanahan may be low on their list.

                Yet, those are ST and defensive oriented coaches, and Shanahan could be a good offensive alternative.

  23. Grant, thanks fort the write up. I don’t know enough about the GM candidates to support or contradict you, but I like the clear, reasoned specifics for hiring Wolf (while the rest of the sporting media seems stuck on the horse race aspect).

    I too prefer Shanahan or McVay. History says second time coaches that were coordinators between HC jobs have the highest success percentage compared to other types (college HCs, coordinators promoted to first time HCs, position coaches…) But to steal a phrase, you sometimes have to “swing for the fences.” Wolf + Shanahan or McVay works for me.

    I also prefer the GM gets picked first. The GM is the HCs boss. That must be clear, even if they are in an employer mandated cooperative environment.

  24. The more you hear the rumours the more it looks like McDaniels/Riddick. I’m okay with that as as Vrabel joins them.

  25. Mcdaniels is the target and Riddick is his choice for GM… That’s my prediction and I’m sticking to it. Damn it I sound like Seb!

    1. The GM will most likely be Riddick then. I saw on Niners Wire earleir that those two have been talking for a year now about working together.

  26. [Accidentally posted in the wrong spot above. This is a general question to all, not a reply to a post]

    Like alot of Niner fans, if Myles Garrett is taken #1, I’m for trading back. Will there be some good trade back offers?

    Last year Cleveland…
    – Gave up #2 overall and a fifth-rounder (2017).
    – Got #8, #77, #100, #8 (2017), second rounder (2018 ).

    I’d jump at that deal, but I its unlikely there will be offers anywhere like what the Browns got

    To all… if Garrett was gone, what would you accept to trade back into the 7-12 range?

      1. They could trade back to the Jets for a first and second, then trade back to the Browns for an additional second. for their 12th overall pick.

        Think the draft value chart would balance out.

        Niners could possibly draft Barnett or Foster at 12.

        1. When you say “to the Jets for a first and second”, you mean trading the Niners 2 for the Jets 6, 38, and 2018 first?

          I’d jump at that, but it doesn’t feel like pick 2 will be such a hot commodity this year.

          1. No, just the second overall pick for their 6th and 38th pick.

            Jets may want to leapfrog over the Bears to snag Watson, whose stock rose sharply with his championship performance. Bears need a QB, too.

            Do not think the Niners will get an additional first next year, that is way too much.

            1. I’m not expecting anything like last year’s Browns trade back. Mostly wondering what kind of trade fans would say yes to, or think will possibly happen this year.

          1. It has to be a win-win for both sides.

            Jets get the best QB, and the Browns get 2 players they covet. Niners get more bodies.

        2. Seb, I like the trade #2 back to #6, then another trade pushing #34 up into the first scenario.

          Sometimes teams throw charts out the window with picks so high up. The Browns got a huge haul last year. Way above chart. Then there’s Oakland in 2013 moving from #3 to #12 way below chart. Depends on the talent curve for a particular year.

          If Garrett goes #1 as expected, I think the trade bait will be a little better than 2013, but not much. (of course, at this early point I’m guessing).

          I’d want the Jets 6, 38 and 4th (or 2018 3rd) at least. That’s close to chart too, not that I care at this point. It all boils down to Jonathan Allen vs Picks.

          1. B2W, the trade value chart would allow for another pick, so I would accept a 2018 pick, maybe even a 2nd round pick. It all depends on how much the Jets want Watson. If they dont value Watson, they should just wait.

            I personally do not want Jonathan Allen. He did not shine in the national Championship.

            Like Razor, I like Barnett, Solomon Thomas or even Taco Charlton over Allen.

            1. Allen was a bit of a puzzle in the national championship. He was great the week before. But I really like Allen. The sum of his college career is very impressive. The closest thing to Justin I’ve seen coming around, just the thing for a team in search of an identity.

              My main concerns are position because we need edge rushers and ILBs more. Also what the “Alabama factor” where the talent of his team mates makes him look better, draw fewer double teams.

              1. You may be right about Allen, but on the brightest stage, he kinda disappeared.

                Some say the same thing about Reuben Foster, but I think he hits like a ton of bricks.

              2. I wouldn’t be scared off of Allen from one game. This is why Derek Carr lasted longer than he should have.

                Besides, he didn’t play badly, he had a good game but didn’t make any splash plays, and he was going against someone who may be a future first round pick.

              3. Allen did his job in the CG. The plan was not just to pressure Watson but to contain him and they did that for the most part. Allen is not an explosive pass rusher, he’s a bruiser who will wear people down and win with strength and quickness. He is dominant against the run also, which is why he is being talked about as the #1 pick. A complete player who can play inside or out. You also need to look at the season as a whole to get a clear understanding of how good he is.

              4. Allen has a non-stop motor and a physical tenacity that is going to make him a nightmare on each snap for the tackle he’s facing(i imagine him as a 5t with us) He’s not going to ring up a bunch of flashy stats but he’s going to put constant pressure on the QB and will force OC’s to either run away from his side or use an extra blocker to double team him. What this all really means is that the OLB’s that are behind him are going to start to shine. With all the work that the line will have to spend on stopping Allen the linebackers will be free to make more of an impact in the pass rush or with all the overcompensation to stop that one side of the line the weak side will start to make more plays.

                Allen is the type of player that will keep offensive tackles and offensive line coaches up at night.

              5. I wasn’t seeing that and if it was the case you can assume it was some psychological tactic to lull his opponent into thinking he’s got the upper hand. ;)

              6. I think the way Solomon Thomas played in that Bowl Game most resembled Justin Smith. In fact, I remarked as much during his performance….

              7. I had to ask man. You had never brought him up before he played well in the bowl game and now he’s a total stud in your eyes. You tend to jump around in your opinions on players and are swayed pretty easily. I’m not saying he’s not a good player, just questioning your instant worship of a guy you had never talked about previously while knocking a player who has been one of the best in the country at his position since he arrived. How much of Allen had you seen before the CG?

              8. In season, all I do is watch football, Rocket. A lot of football. I never mentioned Solomon because he’s my third or fourth option. My guy is Barnett. As far as changing my mind and jumping around, it’s very early in the evaluation department my friend, and quite honestly, I get fired up when I see big time players making big time plays in the biggest games of their lives!

          2. Niners should only move back up into the first if they go for McCaffrey, but I think he will fall to the second round, so the Niners may be able to get him with number 34.

  27. Branch says Robinson sustained a sprained ankle in the season final. I’m taking that as good news. No knee issue.

    1. Barnett in a modest trade-back scenario to 4-6 range overall works. If he gets snapped up, there will still be alot of good talent at need spots.

    2. If the 49ers go an offensive HC as is expected, I just don’t see that happening. QB, WR or even RB or OL seem more likely. And yes, could look to trade back from #2 in the process.

  28. I’m impressed Grant. I think you are right on track. I’ve complained before when you were always negative and when you’d take it personally when the 49ers wouldn’t do something you advocated. You picked the offensive coaches we should consider. Mcdaniels is a good OC but I don’t know that he has the personality to be a good HC. He wants Riddick to be the GM. He’s not the best choice and has be on TV lately not working. I wanted Shannahan but he too has had trouble getting along with people.
    Wolf is the best choice for GM. He should be hired by now. If they want Mcdaniels, they might have to go with his guy.
    I like Mcvay the more I hear about him being a good OC but also having the personality and leadership to be HC. The thing with him is the experience and filling out a staff. His DC pick to come with him is Wade Phillips. That combo along with Wolf seals it for me. Will Jed agree though? He needs to be aggressive and go get these guys now.

  29. Grant, this is your second posting where you say that Eliot Wolf is the no brainer for GM. So my simple question to you is: WHY? Other than his being Ron Wolf’s son what makes Eliot Wolf and specifically his contributions to the Packer’s organization a fit with the Niners? Other than developing Aaron Rodgers, what is it about the Packers’ talent acquisition and development that you feel would work for the Niners?

    I’m not saying you’re wrong about Wolf (you know I have problem point that out). Personally, like most NFL teams, I think there are holes in the Packer’s ability to draft and develop some positions but funny enough (because it’s a huge area of weakness for the Niners), the Packers sure do seem to find WRs….which you have to wonder if it’s more of a function of the stable offensive coaching personnel and system or the talent acquired. I don’t know. I wish Ballard were available; I do like how Kansas City’s roster looks as it seems to be well rounded and developed.

      1. interesting article and thanks for the reply.

        I saw nothing in it that specifically describes Wolf’s player evaluation skills and what he has accomplished or had a significant hand in accomplishing in Green Bay. Again, I’m not the greatest fan Green Bay’s roster…it’s not bad but not great either.

        The article simply mentions that Wolf is a good evaluator of talent with no specifics. It also says he’d be aggressive in talent acquisition (at least compared to Ted Thompson). But there is no mention of Eliot Wolf’s football philosophy (we know Baalke’s vision of building another 80’s Giants or early 00’s Ravens team of mostly offense and a necessary evil offense).

        I’m guessing you like him because of his direct connection to the Ron Wolf and Ted Thomspon GM tree which spawned other good GMs….specifically Reggie McKenzie who appears to have a good job turning around the Raiders.

        And finally for me, it’s not a big deal but I just don’t trust anyone under 40 to manage people. (in fact I just can’t take seriously anyone under the age of 35 or 40 about anything other than technical knowledge). I’m not saying that no one under 35 can manage people. Sure they can it’s just not as common for a reason…they lack life experience. And remember Baalke’s downfall was for two primary reasons: that he didn’t accept that the 1906 rule that allowed the forward pass was legitimate and that he couldn’t play well with others (manage relationships).

  30. Grant= rising star protege to his father
    Wolf= rising star protege to his father

    Grant= writing articles since he was 11 years old
    Wolf= scouting players since he was 11 years old.

    Grant= broke the mold for beat writers when he was given a chance to go out on his own. Dominating the 9ers reporting landscape.

    Wolf= Will win 6 more Super Bowls

    1. I’m completely on board with McDonough. I’ll be totally fine if they go with either Wolf or McDonough at GM.

        1. Mic-dun-uh. He’s the son of Will McDonough the former sports writer in Boston. His brother is the play by play guy for MNF.

    1. You must be on the same street that Razor get’s all his dish from because there is zero mention of it on their webpage or on their NFL twitter account so I’m calling shenanigans on this one.

      1. Rams get McVay as HC and Phillips as DC, the 49ers better counter with McDaniels/Vrabel or Shanny Jr/Fangio.

        I did read that Lynn is scheduled for a 2nd interview with the Rams too….

        1. Gus Bradley for DC. Mike McCoy would have been a great OC but Denver just snagged him for the same position. Tom Clements or Brad Childress would be good OC choices.

          1. I liked McCoy too, but wonder if they’ll need a big name OC with a Shanny Jr or McDaniels. I’d be fine with Bradley but reports are he’s headed to Washington to take over as the Redskins DC. Not sure Childress would leave for a lateral move like OC for the 49ers. Does he have any connections to Shanny Jr or McDaniels?

        2. I can’t see a big name coming in as OC if McDaniels or Shanahan is hired. That is a position in name only with those two as they would be the real OC.

    2. Here’s the most substantial report I’ve seen so far:

      Jason La Canfora ‏@JasonLaCanfora 6m6 minutes ago
      Skins bracing for OC Sean McVay to be Rams next HC. Would be very surprised if WSH replace him with an outside hire. They like their staff

  31. With either Mcdaniels,Shanahan or Mcvay we would make the best move
    The same with Wolf.

    Btw in Draft i hope we take Lattimore he has the making of a true shutdown corner.

  32. When I was reading up on the Wolf/Favre trade I came across this gem of a quote from one of my favorite old NFL coaches, Jerry Glanville; “I had to get him out of Atlanta. … I could not sober him up,” Glanville explained in a 2010 radio interview. “I sent him to a city where at 9:00 at night the only thing that’s open is Chili Joe’s. … And that’s what made Brett Favre make a comeback was going to a town that closed down. If I would have traded him to New York, nobody to this day would have known who Brett Favre ever was.”

    1. “He’s never been in the draft room on draft day. He wasn’t in Washington. I don’t think he was in Philly.”

      Oh boy….

    2. It’s just never jived that a guy who’s been out of the league for the past 3 years is somehow a top candidate for a position he’s never held. Makes sense to hire a former GM who’s spent a year or two in a TV booth but a guy who couldn’t even get a job doing what he was before is somehow in line for a promotion after 3 years of not even working in the league?

      1. Riddick/McDaniels is the perfect Jed York move though. Big names that fans know so most will like the hire and he can stop being vilified for a few months.

        1. I dunno.. Jack ..
          I like the Wolf / Shanny or McVay combo..
          b/c .. it would mean a return to the lady
          that brung us …

          Namely … the BWO …

          I see Mickey D / Riddick as another
          slap in the face at Walsh…

          And Jedster has made a
          habit of doing just that

      2. I hear you CFC…. I can’t understand all this Riddick talk… I just read a TK article the other day saying Jed should make Riddick/McDaniels happen….why!!?? Just because he’s a media guy???

        Please Jed have at least more sense than that…. The landscape has been laid out perfectly, you’d have to try really hard to screw this up.

    3. In reading that article and finding out that Jed hasn’t contacted any of Riddick’s former employers, it would not surprise me if he is basing his decision solely on watching Riddick on TV. That seems like a genuine Jed type of move. Hopefully it’s a case of not being truly interested, but if he hires Riddick without vetting all sources, would it really surprise anybody?

    1. Feck yea, he could make a 9-38 loss feel like we just shut out the Seahawks. Fiiiiiiieeeeeeeeeeeeelllllllllllllllldddddddddd Gooaaaaaaaaaaalllllllllllllll!!

  33. While we are waiting for the 49ers to hire someone and Grant to tell us who the next 49er QB will be I thought I might do a little FA shopping. In no particular order.
    Kirk Cousins (I know Wash will most likely resign him but a guy can dream can’t he)
    Eric Berry or D. Poe KC will probably only sign one.
    Ashlon Jeffery
    Glenn Dorsey
    J. Pierre-Paul
    Ron Leary
    Lawrence Timmons
    I would love to see them sign 2 offensive FA’s and 3 on the defensive side 4 if it includes Dorsey.

    1. With the amount of money we have available, here are my thoughts, with an asterisk by the ones I would back the Brinks truck for:

      Eric Berry* S
      Melvin Ingram*OLB
      Dorsey for depth
      Dontari Poe* NT
      Zach Brown ILB (younger than Timmons)
      Hoyer or Glennon (assuming Cousins is re-signed) QB
      Danny Woodhead as third down receiving/running back
      Kenny Britt WR

  34. MWNiner,
    Yes I do if the moneys right and I don’t think he will get that much on the open market. I consider him a mid range FA.

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