49ers

Sources: Trent Baalke could end up with Broncos

Sources: Trent Baalke could end up with Broncos

SANTA CLARA – Trent Baalke does not figure to be out of a job long if, as expected, the 49ers part ways with their general manager at the conclusion of the season.

Multiple league sources told CSNBayArea.com the most likely landing spot for Baalke is under John Elway in the Denver Broncos' personnel or scouting department if 49ers CEO Jed York fires Baalke.

Baalke has served as the 49ers’ general manager since January 2011 after one season working in that role as vice president of player personnel following Scot McCloughan’s departure from the organization.

Baalke is expected to be out as 49ers general manager, league sources have told CSNBayArea.com, and as CBS Sports first reported over the weekend. But a source said York has yet to make up his mind on Baalke's future.

Radio analyst Tim Ryan asked Baalke about the report Sunday on the 49ers' pregame show, via KNBR radio.

“I don’t worry about it. It is what it is,” Baalke said. “I’m going to keep putting my head down and going to work. It’s just something you can’t control. You try and control the things that you can control."

After winning the season-opening game against the Los Angeles Rams, the 49ers (1-12) are on a franchise-worst 12-game losing streak entering Sunday’s game at the Atlanta Falcons.

The 49ers have never experienced a one-win season in franchise history. The 49ers’ worst years in franchise history have been 2-14 seasons in 1978, ’79 and 2004.

Baalke, widely respected around the NFL for his work ethic as a college talent evaluator, is known to have a good relationship with Elway, the Broncos’ executive vice president of football operations/general manager. Baalke and Elway have spent time considerable together while the 49ers and Broncos held joint practices each of the past two summers.

Baalke was named the 2011 NFL Executive of the Year for his role in helping the 49ers turn from a 6-10 team under Mike Singletary to a 13-3 record and appearance in the NFC Championship game under Jim Harbaugh.
 

49ers UDFAs Salvon Ahmed, JaMycal Hasty making most of odd offseason

49ers UDFAs Salvon Ahmed, JaMycal Hasty making most of odd offseason

Salvon Ahmed and JaMycal Hasty were always going to face an uphill battle to make the 49ers' roster, but the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has made the hill a little steeper.

Under normal circumstances, the 49ers' undrafted free agents would have a chance to make a good first impression on the field at rookie minicamp. That's how Matt Breida won his roster spot in 2017. But instead, Hasty and Ahmed spend four hours on Zoom meetings with their position group and coaches, trying to learn everything about the 49ers' offense. The first two hours are spent with the entire group, while the final two hours are just Ahmed, Hasty and undrafted fullback Josh Hokit with assistant coach Bobby Turner.

While it's been unusual, the rookies think it's been a productive start to their NFL careers.

“You don’t have to worry about practices, you don’t have to worry about anything but that one, four-hour window to meet,” Hasty told The Athletic's Matt Barrows. “So there are a lot of things you can cover. There’s a ton of information to learn and pick up on. I mean, the rookies help each other out, the vets bring us along. It’s been a great experience, man.”

The 49ers have built a strong culture and that plays a big role in helping new blood catch up to the rest of the group.

“I think it’s showing what it’d be like even if we were there,” Ahmed told The Athletic. “And I think the culture is strong enough to show through our Zoom meetings. I think how we’re acting now is definitely how everyone would act if we were at the facility.”

The 49ers are likely to carry five running backs in total between the active roster and practice squad. Pencil in Raheem Mostert and Tevin Coleman for two of those spots. Jerick McKinnon, Jeff Wilson, Ahmed and Hasty will have to battle for the final three spots, with McKinnon and Wilson likely having a leg up.

The final roster spot likely will come down to a position battle between Ahmed and Hasty.

Ahmed, 5-foot-11, 197-pounds, never became the game-breaking back he was projected to be when he committed to Washington out of high school. He has quick feet and can be explosive, but he needs to work on his vision and decisiveness to stick in the NFL.

As for Hasty, the Baylor product was misused during his time in Waco, Texas. He's an elite athlete who profiles as a third-down back who can uncover out of the backfield and make plays in the passing game. He's a tough, hard-nosed back who has the explosiveness to fit well in the 49ers' zone-rushing scheme. He's an electric, change-of-pace back who has the potential to morph into a dynamic weapon for coach Kyle Shanahan.

[RELATED: Nine 49ers facing make-or-break season in 2020]

The 49ers might be able to hold a full-squad minicamp in June if Governor Gavin Newsom allows it. That will be the first time Ahmed and Hasty will take the field as 49ers. They must make the most of every opportunity in order to make the roster.

They've already been doing that in the Zoom classroom. The field world comes next.

NFL Network's Adam Rank goes all-in on 49ers after bad 2019 prediction

NFL Network's Adam Rank goes all-in on 49ers after bad 2019 prediction

Not many would have expected the success the 49ers gave us last season. Well, at least one guy in particular.

NFL Network analyst Adam Rank might be the main person to eat his words following his prediction of the team going 3-13. But he's redeemed himself. 

The Super Bowl LIV runners-up obviously were more successful than that going 13-3, however. He heard it all from 49ers fans, even admitting he was an idiot for saying such a thing

Rank wrote on NFL.com that not only are the 49ers becoming one of the league’s “model organizations,” but walking away from Miami didn’t mean they were out of the fight -- not even a little bit.

The 2020 season will bring back tight end George Kittle who looks to be the highest-paid at the position in NFL history, a Super Bowl appearance as a starter by quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Bosa looks to have another successful season and we get to see the freakishly athletic ability of rookie receiver Brandon Aiyuk.

[49ERS INSIDER PODCAST: Listen to the latest episode]

That’s just what’s happening on the field.

Rank praised the front office possessing general manager John Lynch on part of that success as well. 

Rank knows that any team could face a post-championship hangover that not even the strongest of Gatorade could cure. Their expectations are high, but this team is the real deal -- and naturally, they’ll have a target on their backs. But Rank’s done doubting, but said he understands if people don’t believe him.

[RELATED: Richard Sherman wants 49ers detractors to keep doubting them]

“I know me praising the 49ers will make the fans uneasy,” Rank told NBC Sports Bay Area on Tuesday. “Like whenever Ric Flair would cozy up to Sting. And as much as you'd like me to discredit them again, we don't have to resort to such tricks because this is a very good team. Though I don't blame you if you don't trust me.”

He said it, he’s a believer. Now, let’s give the guy a break.