49ers

Steve Young: Equity value more important to Yorks than winning games

Steve Young: Equity value more important to Yorks than winning games

The 49ers are 1-12 and Steve Young is not happy about it

During a Wednesday radio interview with KNBR 680, the Hall of Fame quarterback discussed the state of the organization.

"You don't have to win to make money," Young started. "That’s (the York’s) A game. Their equity value in the team is their A game. It’s what drives them. It’s what drives most of the owners. It’s what matters. It’s what they think about. It’s what they talk about. And the B game, is whether we win some games. It doesn't mean that you don’t want to, or you don’t really want to, or it’s not really important. It’s just not the A game.

"And so when it’s not the A game, that’s the biggest issue with the NFL, is that success doesn’t track to success on the field. So that you’re not held accountable.

“So no matter what we (the 49ers) decide to do here, and my opinion is when you’re 1-12 or 1-13 of if we end up 1-15, to me by definition, everything in the parking lot. Everybody, every living thing out to the parking lot. And nobody gets back in unless you can prove you’re part of the solution. I mean everybody. That’s a tough thing to do because you might have to start over in all kinds of ways.

“But when you're looking like you’re gonna start a revolving door of coaches and general managers and everything else, and the owners can’t by definition feel that rigor -- they don’t feel that, even the people who love the team we're like, ‘This is everything, we’ve gotta, you know...' and the people who are actually calling the shots, it’s not their A game.

"And so it’s like you kind of have to wait 'till they decide how they want to play it. And the calculus is, should we start over? Should we wipe the place out? Should we leave Trent (Baalke) and then maybe do a coach? But that doesn’t look right because we can't have a coaching carousel, so let's let Chip (Kelly) come. Who’s going to be with Chip?

"Because it’s all this calculus that has to go on. And it really, as an ex-player who’s been around a long time, it’s frustrating to watch because it’s never true merit, true everyone in the parking lot and you literally are barred unless you can prove your value that makes this thing move forward.”

In September, Forbes valued the 49ers at an estimated $3 billion -- the fourth highest valuation in the NFL.

In 2010, the franchise was worth an estimated $925 million -- 22nd in the league.

When it comes to the on-field product, does Young see a lot of talent on the roster?

"No, especially leadership talent," Young answered. "You have to have guys -- talent is one thing but leadership is another thing. You gotta have the -- I don't know how many times we've talked about it -- the core group of guys, and they don't have (it). It becomes a revolving door, and very talented guys come through the revolving door ... so until the right combination gets into the locker room and the chemistry gets going ... you need an incentive to go play great football, and if you don't have it, then you don't have the talent.

"So anybody who says well it's coaching ... no ... it's a chemistry and a combination of things that you gotta get the right people in the right places to create that. And if it doesn't get created, by definition you don't have the talent ... leadership is built by the personalities you put in the locker room."
 

Longtime 49ers scout Reggie Cobb dies from apparent heart attack at 50

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49ers.com

Longtime 49ers scout Reggie Cobb dies from apparent heart attack at 50

Longtime 49ers area scout Reggie Cobb died Saturday morning in the Bay Area from an apparent heart attack, the club announced. He was 50.

“We are devastated by the sudden loss of a tremendous teammate and loyal friend, Reggie Cobb,” 49ers general manager John Lynch said in a statement.

“Reggie was an enthusiastic and passionate person who had a special ability to brighten up a room with his personality and infectious smile. For 10 years, the 49ers were better because of Reggie and these unique qualities that he possessed.

“He was a top-notch scout and an exemplary man whose years of service to this organization and the National Football League will not be forgotten. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends in this time of mourning.”

Cobb played seven NFL seasons after entering the league as the No. 30 overall pick of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1990 from Tennessee.

In his career as a running back, he gained 3,743 yards and scored 25 touchdowns while playing four seasons with Tampa Bay and one apiece with Green Bay, Jacksonville and the New York Jets.

He transitioned into scouting, serving two years with Washington and six with Tampa Bay before coming to the 49ers. Cobb was entering his 11th year as an area scout with the 49ers. In 2011, he was named NFC Scout of the Year by the Fritz Pollard Alliance.

Cobb finished his college career ranked third on the University of Tennessee’s career rushing chart with 2,360 yards and 26 touchdowns. He was also a member of the school’s 100th anniversary team. He lettered in track and graduated with a degree in urban studies in 1990.

Cobb lived in Sugarland, Texas, with his son, DeMarcus, according to his 49ers bio.

NFL draft: 49ers should find starters at edge rusher, wide receiver

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USATSI

NFL draft: 49ers should find starters at edge rusher, wide receiver

The 49ers should be able to net major contributors – one on offense and one on defense – in the upcoming NFL draft.

But a few other newcomers will have an opportunity to work themselves into key roles if some of the projected starters stumble or are sidelined.

After filling some of the team’s starting needs in free agency, here’s a look at the 49ers’ top positional priorities heading into the draft, which opens Thursday in Nashville with the first round:

Edge rusher

Behind quarterback, the edge rusher spots are the most important positions on a football team. The 49ers added Dee Ford in a trade. The Kansas City Chiefs initially prevented Ford from becoming a free agent by tagging him with their franchise designation.

Now, the 49ers need another threat on the outside to complement Ford and inside pass rusher DeForest Buckner. More than likely, the 49ers will place a checkmark next to this position with their first-round draft pick.

Assuming the Arizona Cardinals select Kyler Murray at No. 1, the 49ers are widely expected to go with Nick Bosa. If Bosa is gone, then they could eschew an edge rusher to select another defensive tackle, Alabama’s Quinnen Williams. But outside linebacker Josh Allen is also a strong possibility in that spot.

A year ago, the 49ers top edge rushers were Cassius Marsh and Ronald Blair. Marsh was cut shortly after the acquisition of Ford. Blair and Marsh tied for second on the team with 5.5 sacks. Blair is solid, but the 49ers’ defense would be a lot better if his role were reduced because they were able to bring in someone better.

Wide receiver

It is a high priority for the 49ers to add a starting-caliber wide receiver in the draft, in order to have the luxury of dialing back Marquise Goodwin’s role in order to accentuate his strengths and make him more effective.

Among the wide receivers the 49ers are known to have brought into their Santa Clara facility for pre-draft visits are A.J. Brown (Mississippi), Hakeem Butler (Iowa State), N'Keal Harry (Arizona State), Jalen Hurd (Baylor) and Deebo Samuel (South Carolina). All of those players could be available when the 49ers pick at No. 36 overall.

Dante Pettis, the 49ers’ second-round pick a year ago, looks to be on solid footing as a starter. Goodwin, Kendrick Bourne and Jordan Matthews have opportunities to work into significant roles on the outside. But the 49ers need to find another wideout who can carve out a niche. The newcomer does not need to be an every-down player. He just needs to have a unique skill set that coach Kyle Shanahan can implement.

Safety

The 49ers entered the free-agent signing period with Jaquiski Tartt, Adrian Colbert and Marcell Harris as the most-likely starting options. Then, they re-signed Jimmie Ward.

Despite Ward's history of injuries, the 49ers coaching staff – every 49ers coaching staff over the time he has been with the organization – has a high opinion of Ward because of how hard he plays. When he exited the lineup last season with his second season-ending fractured forearm in two years, Ward was playing better than anyone else in the team's secondary.

So Ward at free safety and Tartt or Harris at strong safety is how the 49ers envision opening the season. The 49ers could add more competition to the mix if they select a safety such as Jonathan Abram (Mississippi State), Darnell Savage (Maryland) or Nasir Adderley (Delaware) in the second round.

Cornerback

Among a group that features Richard Sherman, Jason Verrett, Ahkello Witherspoon and Tarvarius Moore, the 49ers should pluck out two starters and good depth. But there are enough questions about each of those four players that should prompt the 49ers to look hard at this position in the draft again.

Sherman is a bit of a mystery. He did not appear to be moving nearly as well as he did during his time with the Seahawks. That is understandable, considering he was returning from a torn Achilles. But Sherman was never really challenged because the 49ers had such large issues on the other side.

Verrett is a starter, but he has been unable to remain healthy. Witherspoon and Moore, the team’s most-recent third-round picks, have the size and skills to be reliable NFL starters. Now, they have to prove it through consistency.

Offensive line

The starting offensive line appears solid with tackles Joe Staley and Mike McGlinchey, guards Laken Tomlinson and Mike Person, and center Weston Richburg. The 49ers need to cover themselves with better depth.

Guard is a spot where a newcomer can step in and conceivably beat out Person and Joshua Garnett. The 49ers could use a mid-round pick on a versatile lineman who could start off at guard and eventually transition into tackle.

[RELATED: Jimmy G opens up about work with Mike Shanahan]

Other needs

Outside linebacker: Malcolm Smith and Mark Nzeocha are in line at the team’s starting strongside linebacker. More competition could be on the way.

Tight end: The 49ers would like to bring in a tight end to serve as George Kittle’s backup or pair with him in two-TE formations.

Punter: Bradley Pinion signed with Tampa Bay as a free agent. Justin Vogel, who was out of the NFL last season, is the only punter on the roster. Day 3 could be the spot for the 49ers to draft a replacement.

Kicker: Robbie Gould is conceivably locked up. But the 49ers showed that they are at least entertaining the thought of bringing in someone else when they showed interest in New England’s Stephen Gostkowski before the Patriots re-signed him.