Is 49ers CEO Jed York dragging his feet? Or is he taking a wise approach?
On Thursday, two NFL teams, the Rams and Chargers, selected new head coaches. That means that of the six teams looking for head coaches at the end of the regular season, only the 49ers are still without one.
Of course, the 49ers also are looking for a general manager at the same time, so it’s a more complicated process. Any new head coach needs to mesh with the new GM, so York – who’s leading the search – has more moving parts to consider in the process.
Plus, some of the candidates the 49ers may be most interested in are off limits right now because their teams are still alive in the postseason. Atlanta offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, New England offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and former Raiders head coach Tom Cable, the offensive line coach in Seattle, all are reported to be on the team’s short list, according to Nick Wagoner of ESPN.com.
Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network this week commended the 49ers for their process in this concurrent search for a head coach and GM. Rapoport says York is taking a meticulous approach.
“How it’s been explained to me, candidates are being asked to discuss the relationship they may or may not have with some of the other candidates,” Rapoport told an interviewer on the Niners’ website. “I can’t say that I’ve seen this approach before, but I really like it. Candidates seem to be intrigued with the possibility that the coach won’t pick the GM, and I don’t get the sense that the GM is going to pick the coach, but it sounds like they’re going to pick each other. That’s kind of a cool thing.”
If the Patriots, Falcons or Seahawks lose this coming weekend, perhaps this process will quickly reach its conclusion. Or, it may drag on through the Super Bowl. If that’s the case, fans and media may get a better idea who York believes is the right choice.
For now, however, nobody yet knows if York has been too cautious and missed out on some good hires that have gone to the Broncos, Bills, Jaguars, Rams and Chargers, or if he’s on the right track.