SANTA CLARA – While explaining why he decided to fire coach Jim Tomsula after one season, 49ers CEO Jed York on Monday expressed confidence general manager Trent Baalke is the person to hire the next head coach and reconstruct the roster.
“Trent understands that I’m not satisfied with the current state of this team,” York said Monday during a 30-minute press conference at Levi’s Stadium. “Trent’s role is to find the next head coach and continue to build this roster and get us back to championship form.”
Baalke has spent the past 11 years with the 49ers with the past five in the role of general manager. He was named NFL Executive of the Year in 2011. But the 49ers had a disastrous 2012 draft, and Baalke’s player selections have netted few playmakers in recent seasons.
“I’ve seen Trent build a championship-caliber roster, in his time as director of player personnel (and) in his time as general manager,” York said. “I believe in Trent’s ability. We have a lot of opportunity in front of us.”
[MAIOCCO: New 49ers coach will determine Kap's future, first-round pick]
Baalke has three years remaining on his contract -- the same time remaining as Tomsula, who signed a four-year, $14 million contract last January. Tomsula will receive the remaining $10.5 million on his deal.
Baalke is currently signed through the 2018 season, CSNBayArea.com has learned. Baalke and the 49ers agreed to another contract since the team announced in February 2012 he signed a three-year extension through the 2016 season.
The 49ers expect to have 12 draft picks, including the No. 7 overall selection after finishing the season with a 5-11 record. The 49ers will have as much cap space as any team in the league.
“We haven’t been the most active in free agency in years past,” York said. “We need to figure out what the right talent is outside of this building and what the right talent is inside of this building and make sure we knock it out of the park in this draft.”
Baalke was in charge of the process a year ago that led to the promotion of defensive line coach Tomsula to take over for Jim Harbaugh as head coach. Tomsula became only the eighth coach fired after just one NFL season since 2000.
“Unfortunately, I didn’t see this team improve collectively from the beginning of the season to the end,” York said. “That’s what ultimately led to this decision.”