Like many of us following Jed York’s 49ers football operation search, Steve Young is wondering what’s taking the CEO so long to find the right GM and head coach.
The Hall of Fame quarterback joined Tolbert and Lund Wednesday to discuss the matter.
“If you are going to blow the thing up, don’t wait,” Young said. “Be aggressive and get the people early. And make a big offer and make it happen. If you wait around, and everybody’s trying to see, and that’s why I worry maybe guys are wondering if there’s a better job. Maybe the 49er job isn’t — and that’s the other question: People, do they hold them off? Is this the premier job or is it not? So I think that’s another challenge that people have.”
Young was asked his thoughts on Louis Riddick, who interviewed for the 49ers’ GM opening on Tuesday. He’s held personnel roles with the Redskins and Eagles. Young, of course, is a colleague of Riddick’s at ESPN.
“Smart guy. Measured. Been around. I like his perspective,” Young said. “He’s not caught up in tape measures and he understands the people side of football. The idea that it’s really about putting the right personalities together, as well as talent. He’s a mature, smart guy. Really like him.”
A week ago, Young said he was looking for an offensive-minded head coach. He thinks that suits San Francisco’s culture better. He endorsed New England’s offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels because of his scar tissue from Denver and his understanding of the Patriots culture.
What about a GM? What type of figure does Young think would best represent what the 49ers need?
“The most important thing is that the football side of the business gets protected away from the business side guys coming over, and visiting, and checking in, and you know, kind of meandering about,” Young said. “I want a GM that’s strong, all the other parts that we want, but also strong in the sense that he’s going to protect the football side of the house.”
There are only three teams left that need to fill head coaching vacancies — the 49ers, Rams and Chargers. The consensus top three candidates left are McDaniels, Sean McVay and Kyle Shanahan. Young said he was actually in communication with Mike Shanahan this week. Mike was the 49ers’ offensive coordinator from 1992-1994, before turning that success into a head coaching gig with the Denver Broncos, where he won two Super Bowls.
“I talked to coach Shanahan yesterday, so a little history there,” Young said. “So we hope that, you know, we can land the right guy. I mean, I’m not saying they are right or wrong. I just hope whoever it is understands the culture of the place, can communicate well, can include not just the players but the fans too, so we get everybody on the same page.”
Does Mike want Kyle to get this 49ers job?
“Yeah, no question. Absolutely. I mean, Mike, I’m still mad that he left in the first place,” Young said. “I think there’s no question that — and I don’t think Mike wants to have an impact. He wants to see Kyle do well. I don’t think Mike’s trying to — I don’t think it’s a long term plan to have Mike come back. But he certainly wants to be a part of helping if he can. And I think Mike has a lot of success and a lot of scar tissue from the NFL, and I think that’s very beneficial.”