49ers consulted Warriors before deciding to restructure training staff


49ers consulted Warriors before deciding to restructure training staff

MOBILE, Ala. -- In an effort to solve one of the issues the franchise determined could be vastly improved, 49ers general manager John Lynch reached out to the NBA’s most successful franchise.

Lynch said on Thursday that he spoke with Warriors head coach Steve Kerr and general manager Bob Myers on the topic of how the NBA champions mesh their athletic trainers with the strength-and-conditioning department.

The Warriors in August added Rick Celebrini as director of sports medicine and performance to oversee the department that includes head athletic trainer Drew Yoder. The club also hired Carl Bergstrom as performance coach.

“We talked about them having similar motivations,” Lynch said. “They made a hire that they’re very excited about.”

The 49ers have been plagued by injuries the past two seasons with 37 players finishing the season on injured reserve. Shortly after the season, the 49ers fired head athletic trainer Jeff Ferguson and head strength and conditioning coach Ray Wright as part of a larger restructuring.

[RELATED: Two more 49ers join Garoppolo, McKinnon in injury rehab]

“You get all these talented people and practitioners, but how do you get everyone towing in the same direction, just like how you want every part of your football organization to be?” Lynch said.

“We consulted with some other teams, organizations in some other sports, looking for the right answers, and trying to put our own stamp on it. We’re not trying to re-invent the wheel. We’re just trying to get that deal right. We’ve been very impressed with the people that we’ve interviewed and we’re hoping to move on this fairly soon and get it going.”

Lynch said the 49ers interviewed eight candidates for the job and will likely conduct follow-up interviews with a couple of the individuals before making a hire after the Super Bowl. Coach Kyle Shanahan earlier this week described the position the 49ers are creating as a “head coach of training.”

“That idea, that head coach of training, that’s really what we’re looking for, someone who can pull everyone together and get everyone focused in the same direction,” Lynch said.

How Kyle Shanahan's 49ers offense impressed Packers' Aaron Rodgers in 2018


How Kyle Shanahan's 49ers offense impressed Packers' Aaron Rodgers in 2018

The 49ers lost to the Green Bay Packers in Week 6 of the 2018 NFL season, but they did win an admirer. 

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers told NBC Sports' Chris Simms at the American Century Championship in Lake Tahoe last week that he was very impressed by Kyle Shanahan's playcalling.

"The stuff they did against us this year ... was unbelievable," Rodgers told Simms on a recent episode of "Unbuttoned" released this week. "You watch on the sidelines going, 'that's pretty cool.'"

San Francisco was without starting QB Jimmy Garoppolo after he tore his ACL in Week 3, but nearly outlasted the Packers in a 33-30 shootout in a cold Monday night matchup on Oct. 15. The 49ers led 30-23 with 13:08 remaining, but Rodgers did Aaron Rodgers Things and marched the Packers 58 yards and 81 yards, respectively, on two scoring drives sandwiched by a costly C.J. Beathard interception. It was one of the team's most prolific games all season, as the 49ers combined for their fifth-highest total yards (401) and their third-most points of the season. 

[RELATED: NFL analyst predicts major improvements for 49ers next season]

The Packers will travel to Levi's Stadium in Week 12 on Nov. 24, and the rematch could contain more fireworks on offense. Rodgers mentioned Shanahan, Simms' former teammate at the University of Texas-Austin and his longtime friend, after discussing his excitement playing in new coach Matt LaFleur's offensive scheme. LaFleur, who is replacing Mike McCarthy, coached with Shanahan in Washington and with the Atlanta Falcons, and LaFleur's brother Mike is the 49ers' wide receivers coach and passing game coordinator. 

If Garoppolo's healthy and LaFleur and Rodgers click on the opposing sideline, another high-scoring classic could be in the cards. 

Kyle Shanahan is 'doppelganger' of Bill Belichick, Colin Cowherd says

Kyle Shanahan is 'doppelganger' of Bill Belichick, Colin Cowherd says

There are a litany of great head coaches in the NFL today, but few are both as universally beloved by colleagues and as overlooked by fans and media members as 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan. The former Falcons offensive coordinator has fought an uphill battle since taking over prior to the 2017 season -- and has a 10-22 record to show for it. 

Colin Cowherd was recently discussing the NFL.com head coach rankings that were released yesterday, and he strongly disagreed with one particular selection.

"Shanahan, has a doppelganger in this league, it's called Belichick," Cowherd said. Bill Belichick is easily the most well-renowned head coach in the NFL and just came off of his sixth Super Bowl victory in February.

"Kyle Shanahan has an incredible career as a coordinator," the host of The Herd on FS1 explained. "Everywhere he's gone, He made Matt Schaub a pro bowler, he made Matt Ryan an MVP. Then he leaves, the teams aren't the same and the quarterbacks aren't the same. "

Cowherd pointed out some data on just how much better the 49ers have been with Jimmy Garoppolo on the field than when he's been off, but closed out his analysis with a strong take.

[RELATED: DeForest Buckner has big expectations for himself, 49ers in 2019 season]

"In two years, he will be a top-six coach."

With Shanahan and general manager John Lynch each having four years remaining on their contracts, 49ers fans can rest easy knowing they've got a very highly regarded head coach pacing the sidelines each week. The regular season opens Sept. 8 when San Francisco travels to Tampa Bay to face the Buccaneers.