Green Bay executive Brian Gutekunst, who was widely considered a favorite for the 49ers’ vacant general manager position, has decided to remain with the Packers, a source confirmed Friday morning.
Gutekunst has signed a new contract to remain with the Packers, as ESPN and the NFL Network first reported.
Gutekunst, 43, is in his 18th season with Green Bay and his first as director of player personnel. He interviewed with the 49ers on Jan. 5.
Gutekunst becomes the second Packers executive in two days to withdraw from consideration for the 49ers job. On Thursday, director of football operations Eliot Wolf decided to remain with Green Bay with a new title and an increase in salary. Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Wolf withdrew his name from consideration when it became apparent he would not get the job.
The race for the general manager position appears to be down to two known candidates: Minnesota assistant general manager George Paton and Arizona Cardinals vice president of player personnel Terry McDonough. One source described the situation as "fluid."
Two years ago, Paton and Falcons coach Dan Quinn, the boss of presumptive 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan, were reportedly connected as part of a possible general manager-coach team. Paton and Quinn know each other from their time together with the Miami Dolphins. Paton and Shanahan interviewed with the 49ers on the same day – both in Atlanta.
McDonough is a highly respected talent evaluator who was believed to have Shanahan at the top of his list all along for coaches with whom he wanted to work, according to sources.