Mike Singletary Gave Mike Nolan Game Ball After 49ers' First Victory

After a 2-5 start, the 49ers fired Mike Nolan and the team has gone 3-3 in the six weeks since. The biggest win of the year came last Sunday against the Jets, and in addition to bringing a little joy to a hapless Bay Area football scene, it also greatly improved the chances that Mike Singletary will be more than an interim head coach.

Of course, maybe Nolan would still have the job if he had the cajones to tell offensive coordinator Mike Martz, "I know you're an 'offensive mastermind' and whatnot, but I'm pretty sure that J.T. O'Sullivan isn't very good. Call it a hunch. I'll take my chances with Shaun Hill."

But what's done is done.

There is a happy ending of sorts for Nolan, however:

... Singletary and his wife drove over to former head coach Mike Nolan's house following the 49ers first win under Singletary (against the Rams) to deliver a game ball.

"The biggest thing about that I just felt that every thing I've had a chance to do since I've been head coach - a lot of it stemmed from Mike. To me, winning that first game was as much his as it was mine, because of everything he did, and all of the time he put into me, teaching and the conversations and all of the things we talked about. I wanted to make sure that i let him know that I'm always indebted to him as a friend and a mentor."

It's a nice story, and a very gracious gesture by Singletary, although, after the demoralizing loss to the Cardinals, I wonder if he talked to Nolan about "how to get rid of Martz so that it looks like an accident." I'm leaning towards yes.

It's also worth mentioning Singletary's kind words for Vernon Davis, the 49ers tight end who wasn't exactly in the coach's good graces earlier this season:

"One thing that jumps out is Vernon Davis. I don't know if there's ever been a tight end to block better than Vernon Davis. He did an exceptional job. He was outstanding. The best I've ever seen. I'm talking about period.

Maybe a slight exaggeration, but Singletary gets points for positive reinforcement. He sounds just like Rod Marinelli sans the dementia.

Mike Singletary Gave Mike Nolan Game Ball After 49ers' First Victory originally appeared on NFL FanHouse on Tue, 09 Dec 2008 13:55:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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