49ers

49ers Mailbag: A Shanahan-Shanahan show?

49ers Mailbag: A Shanahan-Shanahan show?

The outcome of the Atlanta Falcons’ NFC Championship game on Sunday against the Green Bay Packers will determine how quickly the 49ers can move in securing Kyle Shanahan as the team’s next head coach.

If the Falcons lose, the 49ers will have a second meeting with Shanahan early in the week, during which team executives Jed York and Paraag Marathe would be expected to finalize the deal.

But if the Falcons win and advance to the Super Bowl, the early part of Shanahan’s week would be spent game-planning and preparing to face the AFC representative. The second interview with the 49ers would be scheduled for Friday.

Shanahan is also expected to be involved in the 49ers’ hiring of the general manager.

Now, let’s dip into our 49ers Mailbag to answer some questions posted on our Facebook page:

Q: Do you think Mike Shanahan will have any role in the team?‬ (Robert Allen Swenor)
A: Mike Shanahan, of course, is the father of presumptive 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan. Aside from that, it does not appear as if Mike will have an official role with the club.

A question that must be asked is this: Does Kyle Shanahan benefit from having his father in the building? The answer is, probably not.

Of course, this is not to say the elder Shanahan will not have some level of influence with the 49ers.

If the 49ers close the deal with Kyle Shanahan, as both sides expect right now, Mike Shanahan will undoubtedly be a valuable resource to his son. I’m sure Mike Shanahan will attend some practices in training camp and during the regular season. He will always serve as a mentor to his son.

Q: Do you think that the 49ers are going after particular D-coordinators based on their own desires or are they quietly doing it on behalf of Shanahan's request?‬ (Eddie SF Torres)
A: Whenever someone interviews for a head-coaching position, that individual presents a wish list of the assistants he plans to pursue to join his staff.

The 49ers have gone after Vic Fangio and Gus Bradley to serve as the defensive coordinator on the next staff. The Chicago Bears declined to allow Fangio the opportunity to leave. Bradley decided on joining the Los Angeles Chargers instead of the 49ers or Washington.

The 49ers feel confident Shanahan will become their next coach. It's also safe to assume Shanahan expressed his wishes at defensive coordinator – and, perhaps, other coaching positions on his future staff.

Q: Should the team draft a QB or get a free agent?‬ (Greg Luthy)
A: Both.

One of the interesting things about both of the two serious head-coach candidates is each lined up neatly with a quarterback. In the case of Josh McDaniels, it was easy to connect the dots on a possible trade for New England backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.

Obviously, Kirk Cousins is the quarterback who could be available for the 49ers to add with Shanahan in charge. Shanahan coached Cousins for two seasons with Washington, during which he made just four starts.

Cousins has emerged in the past two seasons. He made $20 million last year on the franchise tag. And he would make at least $24 million this season under the same tag.

If Washington places the exclusive franchise tag on Cousins at a higher one-year price, he would be completely off the market. But, otherwise, there would be room for the 49ers to sign him at the cost of two first-round draft picks or negotiate a trade with Washington.

It seems obvious the 49ers would at least inquire about the chances to acquiring Cousins.

So, back to the original question, expect the 49ers to add a veteran quarterback or two in the weeks after the beginning of the new league year on March 9.

Then, seven weeks later, there’s the NFL Draft. Which veteran quarterback(s) the 49ers acquire will determine their needs in the draft.

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49ers-Chiefs injury report: Reuben Foster, Malcolm Smith return

49ers-Chiefs injury report: Reuben Foster, Malcolm Smith return

SANTA CLARA -- The 49ers, in essence, added two linebackers to the team Wednesday.

Reuben Foster returned to the practice field after serving a two-game suspension, and veteran Malcolm Smith was cleared to undergo a full practice for the first time since he sustained a hamstring injury in the 49ers’ Aug. 9 preseason opener.

Rookie middle linebacker Fred Warner played well in the first two weeks without Foster or Smith alongside him. It appears to be unlikely that Warner will lose his starting role.

And Foster almost assuredly will step back into the 49ers' lineup at weakside linebacker after serving his punishment for violations of the NFL’s policies on substances of abuse and personal conduct. The team released veteran guard Matt Tobin to make room on the 53-man roster for Foster.

Smith was the 49ers’ biggest defensive acquisition on the first day of free agency in 2017. But he missed all of last season with a torn pectoral sustained early in training camp. The 49ers still view him as a valuable asset because of his fit for the defensive system.

So, is it possible Warner, Foster and Smith all could see action together?

“We don’t have the plan, yet,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said Wednesday. “We’ve got to see how they are, how they play. The plan is to do whatever we think gives us the best chance to win. Hopefully, we’ll be able to make a better guess at that decision these three days of practice.”

Mark Nzeocha took over as the 49ers’ starting strongside linebacker in the team’s base defense after a trade sent Eli Harold to the Detroit Lions.

“If I knew what way we were going to go this week, I wouldn’t tell you guys, but I do mean I don’t know, yet,” Shanahan said. “Rueben hasn’t been here in two weeks. Today is going to be Malcolm’s first day of full practice. So we want to see how all of those guys do, and it’ll be a tough decision at the end of the week, but a tough decision I’m going to be happy to have to make.”

Wednesday’s Practice Report

49ERS
Did not practice
G Joshua Garnett (toe)
T Joe Staley (not injury related -- vet day)
S Jaquiski Tartt (shoulder)

Limited practice
WR Marquise Goodwin (quadricep)
G Mike Person (foot)
CB Ahkello Witherspoon (ankle)

CHIEFS
Did not practice
S Eric Berry (heel)
DE Chris Jones (groin)

Limited practice
LB Ben Niemann (hamstring)

Full participation
G Cameron Erving (knee)
CB Kendall Fuller (hand)
DE Jarvis Jenkins (elbow)
LB Reggie Ragland (shoulder, knee)

49ers' Marquise Goodwin noncommittal about his status for Chiefs game

goodwinvikingsinjuryap.jpg
AP

49ers' Marquise Goodwin noncommittal about his status for Chiefs game

SANTA CLARA -- 49ers wide receiver Marquise Goodwin was scheduled to return to limited practice Wednesday while still nursing a deep thigh bruise from a Week 1 collision with Jaleel Jackson, the Minnesota Vikings’ 316-pound defensive tackle.

Goodwin made no promises about his availability for the 49ers' Sunday game against the Kansas City Chiefs after being inactive in Week 2 against the Detroit Lions.

“I’ll just take it a day at a time and see where it goes,” Goodwin said.

“It’s the nature of this game. You go through a lot of stuff, you go through a lot of things throughout the season. You just have to roll with the punches.”

If Goodwin is healthy enough to play, two of the fastest players in the NFL could be on the field Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium. Chiefs receiver Tyreek Hill is a speedster who ran an unofficial 4.24 seconds in his pro day before the 2016 draft.

Goodwin ran an official time of 4.27 seconds at the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine, which uses electronic timing and produces a slower time than handheld stopwatches.

Goodwin on Wednesday was asked to compare the speed of the two players.

“Me to Tyreek?” Goodwin asked. “I don’t compare myself to anybody, but I mean . . . “

At that point, Goodwin rolled up the sleeve on his left arm to show a tattoo of the Olympic rings. He won the U.S. Olympic Trials and competed in the 2012 London Games in the long jump.

“I ain’t sayin’ nothing,” Goodwin said, smiling. “You take that wherever you want to take it.”