Singletary: Offseason moves will prove special teams is priority

Coach Mike Singletary said he understands the importance of special teams and “some of the things we’ll do this offseason will reflect that.”


Singletary today hired veteran NFL coach Kurt Schottenheimer as special-teams coordinator to replace Al Everest. Singletary said he is not concerned that Schottenheimer has not coached special teams since 1994. Kurt spent most of the past 15 seasons as a defensive coach, and that suits the requirements of coaching special teams just fine, Singletary said.


Schottenheimer is spending this week as a coach in the East-West Shrine Game in Orlando with his brother, Marty Schottenheimer. Kurt Schottenheimer coached 49ers defensive coordinantor Greg Manusky, and coached with Manusky and 49ers offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye.


As far as the return game, Singletary said the club is putting together its plan for free agency and will see which players are unrestricted free agents, which are restricted, and which players may become available in trades. The 49ers might add a return man in the draft, too.


Singletary said he would like to have several players on their 53-man roster who are capable of returning punts and kickoffs.


Singletary said Everest was going through some personal matters and he had to let him go. Singletary did not specify the matter with which Everest was dealing.


Singletary said the “miscommunication” with Everest during the game at Seattle – when a reverse was called on a punt return without Singletary’s confirmation — did not play into the decision. Singletary said, “If I were that shallow as a coach, I need to be out of the game.”


Singletary also said . . .


–There will be no other changes on the coaching staff, unless a coach leaves on his own. Singletary said he has received requests from other teams to speak with some of his assistants for jobs. He is sorting through those requests. He did not say which assistants or for which jobs.


–He said he spoke last week with former 49ers coach Mike Nolan, who brought him from the Ravens to the 49ers in 2005. Nolan and the Denver Broncos mutually parted ways on Monday, and he figures to be a hot commodity for any opening at defensive coordinator. “It’s just unfortunate,” Singletary said. NFL Network and ESPN report Nolan already has an interview set up with the Dolphins. Nolan and Bill Parcells are known to have a good rapport.


–Singletary will spend most of next week watching Senior Bowl practices in Mobile, Ala.


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