INDIANAPOLIS – Shortly after quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello left the 49ers to become Vic Fangio’s offensive coordinator with the Denver Broncos, it appeared Mike LaFleur was the favorite to fill the position.
LaFleur was the 49ers’ passing game coordinator and wide receivers coach last season. He worked with the quarterbacks for the 49ers-coached South team at the Senior Bowl.
LaFleur will no longer be solely in charge of the wide receivers with the 49ers, and he will not coach the quarterbacks, either.
Instead, LaFleur will have a myriad of duties as he retains the position of passing game coordinator. He will work closely with head coach Kyle Shanahan, while he is also expected to help assimilate the 49ers’ new quarterbacks and wide receivers coaches into the system.
The 49ers on Wednesday announced the completion of its coaching staff, which highlights Shanahan’s vision for a restructured staff and his reliance on two coordinators on the offensive side of the ball.
The club also announced the hiring of Ben Peterson as head of player health & performance. The 49ers also promoted Dustin Perry to head strength & conditioning coach. The 49ers are still interviewing candidates to take over as the team’s head trainer.
Shanahan will continue to oversee the offense and call the plays. In January, he denied LaFleur and run game coordinator Mike McDaniel from opportunities to leave the organization for coordinator positions. Green Bay coach Matt LaFleur was denied permission to hire his younger brother.
Shanahan said he considered those opportunities as lateral moves after LaFleur and McDaniel were promoted to coordinator positions following the 2017 season.
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Mike LaFleur’s duties as the passing game coordinator will require him and Shanahan to spend a lot of time with Welker and Day to help train them in the intricacies of the 49ers’ offense.
Shanahan spent a lot of time the past two seasons in the quarterbacks meeting room with Scangarello. LaFleur will likely be a regular in the room in 2019 with Day, who is beginning the process of learning what he needs to know about the requirements of coaching the position in Shanahan’s offense.
McDaniel, as run game coordinator, is the template for such a move. McDaniel does not have a position group for which he is responsible. He has the flexibility to spend time with different areas of the offense, including the offensive line and tight ends.
Shanahan, LaFleur and McDaniel are likely to work on game-planning together on Mondays and Tuesdays during the regular season. On the practice days of Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, they will not have responsibilities inside the meeting room of a particular position group.
Without coaching a position, LaFleur and McDaniel are free to spend time on special projects and issues, while also having the flexibility to spend time with any of the position groups.
Former NFL receiver Miles Austin, who joins the 49ers as an entry-level offensive quality control coach, is also likely to spend considerable time with Welker with the wide receivers.
COACHING STAFF UPDATES
Daniel Bullocks - Safeties
Shane Day - Quarterbacks
Wes Welker - Wide Receivers
Zach Yenser - Assistant Offensive Line
Bobby Slowik - Offensive Assistant
Miles Austin - Offensive Quality Control
Brian Fleury - Defensive Quality Control
HEALTH & PERFORMANCE STAFF UPDATES
Ben Peterson - Head of Player Health & Performance
Dustin Perry - Head Strength & Conditioning
Shea Thompson - Director of Performance Monitoring/Assistant Strength & Conditioning
Aaron Hill - Assistant Strength & Conditioning
Mike Nicolini - Assistant Strength & Conditioning