Now on same team, Sherman, York unblock each other on Twitter


Now on same team, Sherman, York unblock each other on Twitter

ORLANDO, Fla. – After four-time Pro Bowl cornerback Richard Sherman negotiated and signed his three-year contract with the 49ers, there was another matter with the organization that had to be settled.

“We had to unblock each other on Twitter,” 49ers CEO Jed York said Wednesday at the NFL owners meetings.

York declined to identify the specific interactions on social media that led to the mutual blockings, but he certainly was not alone among the 49ers and their fans who have been annoyed with Sherman’s antics in the past.

“There’s just a level of competition and that competitive spirit,” York said. “I’m happy to be fighting alongside him. But there was definitely a rivalry.

“At the end of the day, football is a business, but you have to figure out can you work with people who have different perspectives and difference histories. And with Richard, he’s going to come in and be the consummate pro.”

For much of the past decade, the 49ers have been unable to come up with a compatible tandem at the two most-important positions on the football side of the organization. At least through one year, it appears they got it right with coach Kyle Shanahan and general manager John Lynch.

“I think everybody’s on the same page,” York said.

“It makes it easier when you start 0-9 and nobody’s pointing fingers at each other.”

The 49ers finally seem to have a well-defined plan in which the coaching staff and front office are working together. York referenced the team’s approach to free agency. In the past, the 49ers would list their positions of need with players ranked in order of priority -- with little regard to how the individuals actually fit the 49ers' style of either side of the ball. This year, Shanahan and Lynch came up with a small pool of players in which they were genuinely interested.

The 49ers signed Sherman before the start of free agency. He is considered the prototype cornerback for the system defensive coordinator Robert Saleh has installed. The scheme is based on Seattle’s defense.

Center Weston Richburg and running back Jerick McKinnon were the only two players the 49ers pursued at the start of free agency. Both players signed lucrative contracts with the 49ers.

“It started with the foundation of John and Kyle being on the same page on how we want to build our team and this is ultimately where we want to get to, and we want to get to sustainable success,” York said.

“The biggest thing for me – and it’s very, very hard to get this – but it’s a combination of talent and culture. When you see teams that have talented people and cultural fits, they are the ones that are competing for and winning championships.”

York said he knew within the first five minutes of interviewing Shanahan more than a year ago for the head-coaching job last year that he would always get an honest answer. York asked Shanahan what he thought of the 49ers.

His answer: “It wasn’t very complimentary,” York said.

York added, “You can see how some people would take that the wrong way. For me, I just want direct feedback from the coach. You’re probably the most-important person in the organization. We have to be on the same page. I have to know exactly where you stand. I never doubt where Kyle stands.”

The 49ers, Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Chargers jointly submitted a proposed bylaw that would have limited the number of games West Coast teams could play at 10 a.m. on the West Coast to three per season.

The bylaw was voted down with little support from teams outside the Pacific time zone. TV officials did not support the move because of its expected limits on broadcasting options.

“It’s not going to be an excuse for us, but it’s a clear competitive disadvantage,” York said. “And we want to make sure people understand that.”

There were 23 such games last season in which West Coast teams played in the early Sunday time slot. The proposal would have limited it to a maximum of 18 times.

Shanahan had never coached a West Coast team before last season. He recognized the difficulty with the early starts last season. The 49ers played five away games that began at 10 a.m. in the Pacific time zone. The club changed its travel plans late in the season from Saturdays to Fridays for games at Houston and Chicago in hopes of benefitting from an extra day to get acclimated to the change of time zones.

The 49ers also proposed a resolution that would require all NFL stadiums to have three separate locker rooms for females of the home and visiting staffs, as well as game officials. York said there was unanimous support for the proposal but the voted was tabled to allow some teams that do not own their stadiums to iron out the details of the necessary construction costs.

The 49ers have two full-time female employees on the football side on game days: offensive assistant Katie Sowers and assistant athletic trainer Laura Schnettgoecke.

The 49ers have been the epicenter of the protests of social inequality that began in 2016 on NFL sidelines during the national anthem. York said he expected more discussion of the topic at the owners meetings, which concluded Wednesday.

“It really wasn’t discussed and touched on in great detail,” York said. “I thought there would probably be more discussion. But there wasn’t much discussion in the last three days on that issue, where there’s been more discussion in the past.”

York said he believes there has been great progress with the NFL working with the Players Coalition with the possibility of more good things to emerge from the sides working closely together.

“You want to work proactively with the players and figure out how to do something together where there’s not a reason to protest,” York said. “We want progress.”

York said the NFL can use its money, influence and platform to team up with players who wish to affect positive change on social matters.

The biggest discussion point might have been the desire to increase player safety. The NFL passed a rule on Tuesday to penalize players who initiate contact by leading with their helmets.

"When you talk about taking the head out of the game, we definitely have to make sure the game is safer," York said. "It's easy for non-experts to say, 'You should do this; uou should do that.' But when coaches actually sit down and talk about it, it’s great to hear experts in any field get up there and speak eloquently about how to do it in the right way."

49ers 2018 schedule released: Analysis and predictions

49ers 2018 schedule released: Analysis and predictions

The 49ers released their full 2018 schedule on Thursday evening. Here's the slate:

Sunday, Sept. 9, at Minnesota, 10 a.m. (FOX)
There was a time when we thought the Vikings’ quarterback would be suiting up for the road team in this matchup. But, thanks to Bill Belichick’s generosity, Jimmy Garoppolo will be wearing the road whites while Kirk Cousins and his talented supporting cast will be decked out in purple. Garoppolo’s undefeated run as a starting quarterback is put to the test in the opening week. And San Francisco newcomer Jerick McKinnon gets an early chance to prove to his former team that he should have been an every-down running back. Prediction: L.

Sunday, Sept. 16, vs. Detroit, 1:05 p.m. (FOX)
First-year Lions head coach Matt Patricia – and the pencil behind his ear – travel to the Bay Area for the organization’s first visit to Levi’s Stadium. Prediction: W.

Sunday, Sept. 23, at Kansas City, 10 a.m. (FOX)
Alex Smith’s five-year run as Kansas City’s starting quarterback came to an end. Arrowhead Stadium is now Patrick Mahomes’ home, and it remains a difficult environment for road teams. Prediction: L.

Sunday, Sept. 30, at L.A. Chargers, 1:25 p.m. (FOX)
Fans of the 49ers travel well. The challenge is on to snap up as many of the 27,000 tickets in the Charges’ temporary home venue as possible. The 49ers will need a lot of help against a talented team that finished last season with a lot of momentum. Prediction: L.

Sunday, Oct. 7, vs. Arizona, 1:25 p.m. (FOX)
The Cardinals have undergone a facelift with the retirements of head coach Bruce Arians and quarterback Carson Palmer. The new crew of coach Steve Wilks and Sam Bradford – or whoever ends up at QB – inherits a six-game head-to-head win streak against the 49ers. Prediction: W.

Monday, Oct. 15, at Green Bay, 5:15 p.m. (ESPN)
Aaron Rodgers did not get any say in Packers personnel matters this offseason, and we’re hearing the NFL schedule-maker did not consult him, either. But he certainly will not complain about this prime-time matchup against the team for which he rooted as a child growing up in Chico. Prediction: L.

Sunday, Oct. 21, vs. L.A. Rams, 5:20 p.m. (NBC)
This could be a pivotal mid-season matchup featuring two franchises that took different approaches during the offseason. The 49ers were measured in free agency, while the Rams played fantasy football. L.A. general manager Les Snead went all-in during the offseason with the additions of cornerback Marcus Peters and Aqib Talib, along with defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and receiver Brandin Cooks. Prediction: L.

Sunday, Oct. 28, at Arizona, 1:25 p.m. (FOX)
After back-to-back three-point losses in the desert the past couple of seasons, the 49ers will need to take care of business against the Cardinals to be serious contenders for a playoff spot. Prediction: W.

Thursday, Nov. 1, vs. Oakland, 5:20 p.m. (FOX/NFLN)
Levi’s Stadium was built as a two-team facility, just in case the Raiders were interested in moving to the South Bay. In the building’s fifth year, the Vegas-bound Silver and Black finally get a look inside. Facing the 49ers during a short week is ideal for the Raiders, as Jon Gruden and Co. do not have to step on a plane. Kyle Shanahan will match wits against the man who gave him his first NFL job. Shanahan was Gruden’s offensive quality control coach in 2004-’05 with Tampa Bay. Prediction: W.

Monday, Nov. 12, vs. N.Y. Giants, 5:15 p.m. (ESPN)
The 49ers have a short week, followed by a long week. A year ago, the Giants’ trip to Levi’s Stadium resulted in the end of the losing streak of 49ers’ franchise-worst start. C.J. Beathard was under center that day, and Marquise Goodwin provided one of the highlights of the season with an 83-yard touchdown catch just hours after he and his wife lost their baby boy due to complications from pregnancy. Prediction: W.

Bye week

Sunday, Nov. 25, at Tampa Bay, 10 a.m. (FOX)
The 49ers will have to go light on the tryptophan from their Thanksgiving feasts to be ready for the cross-country travel and their matchup against Jameis Winston and the Buccaneers. The 49ers will be making just their second trip to Tampa of the past 14 seasons. Prediction: W.

Sunday, Dec. 2, at Seattle, 5:20 p.m. (NBC)
Is there any doubt Richard Sherman will be a little bit hyped to go back to Seattle with something to prove to Pete Carroll and John Schneider? The “12s” will find out what it’s like when Sherman is not on their team. It’s a different Seattle team, but Russell Wilson is as elusive as ever. Prediction: L.

Sunday, Dec. 9, vs. Denver, 1:05 p.m. (CBS)
These teams are skipping their annual exhibition game in lieu of the regular-season matchup. The Broncos’ last meaningful visit to Levi’s Stadium turned out pretty well – a victory over the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50. Prediction: W.

Sunday, Dec. 16, vs. Seattle, 1:05 p.m. (FOX)
It’s not a rivalry until the 49ers prove they can actually beat the Seahawks, who hold a nine-game head-to-head win streak. (It could be 10 at this point.) The Seahawks’ dominance began in the NFC Championship game in January 2014, when Sherman broke up Colin Kaepernick’s pass and Malcolm Smith got the interception. Now, both Sherman and Smith are wearing the other uniform. Prediction: W.

Sunday, Dec. 23, vs. Chicago, 1:05 p.m. (FOX)
These teams should know each other pretty well. It will be the fifth consecutive season in which the 49ers have played against the NFC North team. The teams have split the previous four meetings, as the 49ers evened the score last season with a 15-14 victory in Garoppolo’s first start with the 49ers. There is no threat of a snow storm or freezing rain in this locale. Prediction: W.

Sunday, Dec. 30, at L.A. Rams, 1:25 p.m. (FOX)
The 49ers have not lost to the Rams in Southern California since 1986. The stakes could be higher this season than we’ve seen in a long, long time as the 49ers could offer the defending NFC West champs their stiffest competition. This could be a huge game – or it could be like a year ago when the Rams rested every significant starter to get ready for the playoffs. Prediction: L.

Report: 49ers will play at Packers on Monday Night Football


Report: 49ers will play at Packers on Monday Night Football

We won't know the full 49ers 2018 schedule until 5pm, but we are starting to learn some specifics.

The 49ers will play at the Packers on Oct. 15, according to ESPN's Rob Demovsky.

That will be in prime time on Monday Night Football.

We already know of another prime time game for the 49ers: Thursday, Nov. 1 at home against the Raiders.

San Francisco and Green Bay did not play in 2017 or 2016.

The last meeting between the franchises was on Oct. 4, 2015 -- a 17-3 Packers win at Levi's Stadium.

Jim Harbaugh and the 49ers opened the 2012 season with a 30-22 win at Lambeau Field.

The 49ers then beat the Packers 45-31 in the divisional round of the playoffs.

In 2013, the 49ers beat the Packers in the season opener, 34-28.

Four months later, San Francisco prevailed in a wild card game, 23-20.

Check back at 5pm as 49ers Insider Matt Maiocco will provide analysis and a prediction for every 2018 regular season game...