Source: Singletary will not return as head coach


Source: Singletary will not return as head coach

Dec. 26, 2010MAIOCCO ARCHIVE49ERS PAGE 49ERS VIDEOMatt MaioccoCSNBayArea.comST. LOUIS -- The drama and dysfunction reached new depths Sunday for the 49ers. And coach Mike Singletary will not return as head coach next season.The only question is whether Singletary will be fired before or after the team's season finale, according to a source close to the situation. The 49ers are 5-10 with one game to play.Owner John York, team president Jed York and executives Trent Baalke and Paraag Marathe were in discussions Sunday afternoon whether to fire Singletary immediately or wait until after the team's final game of the season, the source told Comcast SportsNet.For the first time all season, Jed York declined to give Singletary a public vote of confidence after the 49ers' 25-17 loss to the St. Louis Rams on Sunday knocked the team from playoff contention.NEWS: Rams end 49ers' playoff hopes with 25-17 win"We want to take our time before we make any decisions like that," Jed York said when asked if Singletary would coach the 49ers in the final game of the season. "You don't want to make an emotional decision right now, right after the game."Regardless, York said there would be major changes coming to the organization, including the addition of a general manager. While the 49ers are expected to fire Singletary before naming a general manager, York said he and the new GM will "discuss together" the future of the 49ers' coaching staff.Baalke, the 49ers vice president of player personnel, is expected to be one of the candidates for the position. The 49ers will conduct a search to fill the position, York said.Singletary has two years, 10 million left on his contract, but Jed York said the organization will do anything to get into Super Bowl contention. The 49ers have not made the playoffs since the 2002 season under coach Steve Mariucci."Money is no object," York said. "Our object is to win the Super Bowl. We're going to make this right. What bothers me is this is a playoff-caliber game and we didn't get it done."York said the most disturbing thing about the 49ers' season was that there was a consistent lack of focus. To wit, the 49ers committed eight penalties (one was declined) in the first 17 minutes of the game Sunday against the Rams.York said he believes the 49ers had enough talent on the team to win the NFC West and compete among the top teams in the NFC."We aren't where we need to be," York said. "I'm not taking anything away from the Rams and Seahawks. I wish those teams the best of luck going forward. Someone has to win the the NFC West, which is strange enough that somebody is going to in it at 8-8. There is no reason we aren't that team to win it this year."Singletary said he takes "full responsibility" for the 49ers' disappointing season. The 49ers close out their season next Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals at Candlestick Park."I'm the head coach of this team and, obviously, wanted us to do better and felt we could do better," Singletary said. "But there are some obvious question marks that I hoped would be answered as the season went on. And I'm not going to go into that right now. But, obviously, they were not answered. When that happens, you end up out of the playoffs."When asked if he expected to be back as head coach, Singletary answered, "That is not my decision."The 49ers have progressively gotten worse under Singletary's direction. The club went 5-4 under his direction after he took over for fired Mike Nolan in the middle of the 2008 season.The 49ers finished 8-8 last season. As consensus preseason favorites to win the NFC West, the 49ers fell out of contention in the downtrodden division.Singletary's handling of the 49ers' offense has fueled a great deal of the skepticism about his ability to succeed as a head coach. And, certainly, his handling of the team's quarterback situation in recent weeks has been clumsy.Singletary made quarterback changes after each of the 49ers' previous two defeats. He made the change from Troy Smith to Alex Smith two weeks ago because he said Troy Smith did not have enough grasp of the offensive system.RELATED: 49ers Notebook: 49ers notebook: In need of a QB, too
Alex Smith responded with the best game of his career, leading the 49ers to a 40-21 victory over the Seattle Seahawks. But when the team got blown out Dec. 16 against the San Diego Chargers, Singletary decided Troy Smith provided the 49ers with their best hope.Another bizarre scene unfolded on the 49ers' sideline early in the third quarter after Troy Smith badly overthrew intended receiver Ted Ginn. Rams safety Oshiomogho Atogwe intercepted the pass to help set up the Rams for a field goal that gave them a 15-14.After the interception, Singletary was prepared to make another quarterback change. Alex Smith began warming up, and Troy Smith then engaged in a heated shouting match with Singletary.In the past, Singletary has used the threat of a benching in hopes the quarterback would stand up for himself and insist on staying in the game. And that's what Troy Smith did. So he remained in the game."It was definitely about the quarterback switch," Troy Smith said of the argument. "I felt at the time I wasn't ready to come out. . . . It's ultimately his decision."Late in the third quarter, Troy Smith completed passes of 29 and 24 yards to Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree, respectively. But kicker Jeff Reed missed for the first time with the 49ers, sailing a 34-yard attempt wide left that would've given the 49ers the lead.Singletary finally removed Troy Smith for good after the Rams took a 22-14 lead with 9:36 remaining. Alex Smith tossed a 33-yard pass to Josh Morgan to help the 49ers get in range for Jeff Reed's 47-yard field goal with 5:41 left. Alex Smith entered the game without getting any practice snaps with the 49ers' first-team offense last week, he said.The Rams' Danny Amendola tore off an 84-yard return to the 49ers' 12-yard line. Josh Brown kicked a 28-yard field goal with 3:51 remaining to bump the Rams' lead back to eight points.Troy Smith completed 7 of 19 passes for 153 yards with a touchdown -- a 60-yarder to Michael Crabtree -- and an interception. Alex Smith completed 10 of 15 passes for 120 yards. Rams quarterback Sam Bradford torched the 49ers for 292 yards on 28-of-37 passing with one touchdown.The 49ers looked ill-prepared and lethargic in the first quarter. They committed seven penalties (one of which was declined), and had problems executing a simple shotgun snap.First, starting center David Baas misfired on a third-down situation to end the 49ers' first drive. After Baas left the game briefly with a ribs injury, quarterback Troy Smith could not handle Tony Wragge's snap and he fell on it in the end zone for a safety.That play gave the Rams a 9-0 lead. The Rams scored a touchdown on their first drive, after the 49ers won the toss and elected to defer to the second half. Cornerback Nate Clements was called for a 39-yard pass interference penalty that negated Reggie Smith's interception.The Rams scored on the next play when Steven Jackson took it into the end zone from 1 yard out for a 7-0 lead.The 49ers, who have played a lot of bad quarters of football this season, were at their worst when it mattered the most.When asked if the 49ers' problem was coaching, York said, "I think it's a combination of a lot of things. We haven't put it all together, yet."

Former 49ers quarterback takes over under center for Cardinals


Former 49ers quarterback takes over under center for Cardinals

TEMPE, Ariz. — Blaine Gabbert will get his first start for the Arizona Cardinals when they play the Texans in Houston on Sunday.

Coach Bruce Arians announced the decision after Friday's practice.

Drew Stanton, the starter the last two games, bruised his knee early in the Thursday night loss to Seattle last week. He stayed in the game but has been limited in practice all week.

Arians said it will be a game-time decision as to whether Stanton or recently signed Matt Barkley would be Gabbert's backup.

Gabbert will be making his 41st NFL start. He has a 9-31 record. He signed with Arizona last offseason and was the third quarterback until Carson Palmer broke his arm against the Los Angeles Rams in London and was lost for the season.

49ers Mailbag: Should Shanahan give up play-calling?


49ers Mailbag: Should Shanahan give up play-calling?

Believe it or not, the 49ers’ offense is improved from last season.

The 49ers ranked 31st in the NFL in 2016, averaging 308.1 yards per game. Although the offense is producing just a little better (325.9 yards per game), their ranking this season has shot up to 21st in the league.

The 49ers have had a different head coach and different person running the offense in each of the past four seasons, so their continuity has been severely lacking.

Next season, the 49ers should finally have carryover from one season to the next.

The direction of the offense is one of the topics addressed on this edition of 49ers Mailbag (questions were submitted via Facebook):

Now that we have Jimmy G do you see 49ers getting an offensive coordinator or will it still be Kyle calling the plays? (Julio Orozco)
I'm not sure why the arrival of Jimmy Garoppolo would have any impact on the 49ers’ offensive structure, but in any event, the answer is a resounding, “No.”

Kyle Shanahan has been hailed as one of the best offensive coordinators in the NFL. The reason he was hired as 49ers head coach was, in large part, because of the success he achieved while designing offenses and calling plays.

Why would he give that up? It makes no sense.

Rob Demovsky of ESPN this week identified the 32 primary play-callers. There are 18 NFL head coaches with offensive backgrounds. Twelve of those coaches call their own plays.

Shanahan has a staff of assistant coaches on whom he leans. Passing game specialist Mike LaFleur and quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello are closely involved in working with Shanahan on the passing game, while running game specialist Mike McDaniel, offensive line coach John Benton and running backs coach Bobby Turner spearhead the involvement in the ground game.

But, make no mistake, it is Shanahan who calls the shots. And that's the way it should be. If Shanahan stepped aside as his own offensive coordinator, he would be diminishing his biggest strength as a coach.

What do you see happing with the Hyde situation? We drafted Joe Williams and Breida seems to be a bright spot. There’s a lot of talk about Barkley from Penn State with that high 1st rounder. (Manny Hinojos)
There does not seem to be any movement toward a long-term extension for Hyde. It is getting to the point in the season where it makes a lot more sense for Hyde to play out his contract and hit the open market.

There is no question in my mind the 49ers like Hyde a lot. He has scored some major points with the organization for his performance on the field and how he has responded off the field.

GM John Lynch loved it when Hyde came to the defense of quarterback C.J. Beathard, tussled with Arizona lineman Frostee Rucker and got ejected from the game.

That said, the 49ers are not going to break the bank for Hyde. A multi-year agreement has to come at the right price. My personal feeling is that running backs are luxury pieces when the remainder of a team’s roster -- especially the offensive line -- is set.

Shanahan and his father, Mike Shanahan, and Turner (the assistant coach who served on both of their staffs) have achieved a lot of success without investing heavily in running backs. That’s why I think the 49ers would be best-served by investing elsewhere and using another mid-round draft pick on a running back.

With Joshua Garnett coming back next season how aggressive will Lynch and Shanahan be in trying to get guards this offseason? (David Hartless)
Garnett is not a particularly good fit for this offensive scheme. The presence of Garnett can help increase the competition next offseason, but I do not believe he is being penciled in as a starter.

The 49ers will certainly be aggressive in an attempt to upgrade the guard positions. Currently, Laken Tomlinson and Brandon Fusco are the starters. Neither will be assured a starting job when the offseason begins.

The 49ers did not see enough from Garnett to determine he has a future with the organization, but he will be given the opportunity to come back healthy and prove himself.

Is Eric Reid in long-term plans? (Grant Rasmussen)
I do not believe so. I think the 49ers would like their starting safeties next season to be Jimmie Ward and Jaquiski Tartt – with Adrian Colbert as the front-runner for the No. 3 job.

The 49ers can also be expected to add a player or two in free agency, as well as the draft, to provide a competitive environment in the offseason. The 49ers seemed to telegraph their intention with Reid when they moved him to linebacker with Ward and Tartt remaining as the starting safeties.

That position change lasted about a week, as Ward’s injury prompted the team to move Reid back to safety. Reid is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. It's entirely possible there will not be a big market for him, but I do not believe the 49ers are going to be ultra-competitive in retaining him on the open market.