The San Francisco 49ers were the main topic of conversation Monday on radio row at the Super Bowl in Houston.
Hiring GM John Lynch sent shockwaves through the NFL, opening up Jed York and his franchise for both criticism and praise.
Because Jed York is so closely tied with the national media, we’ve taken the time to transcribe the relevant information some heavy hitters were saying down in Texas.
Jay Glazer, FS1: He’s not a drama guy, at all. Zero drama. And that place (Santa Clara) is all drama. Right? … I think they looked and said we had to do something different. Where John Lynch is different than what Matt Millen did, I think he realizes he doesn’t have the answers but he does have this thing where he has no politics to him. He has this attitude where he kind of has no business being in the league. That’s what I love about him. And yet he’s made (9) Pro Bowls. He’s outworked the world.
Mike Florio, NBC Sports: Once it became clear (Kyle Shanahan) was running the show, that’s when Lynch approached him. Because Lynch isn’t going to be running the show in San Francisco. It’s going to be Kyle Shanahan. Lynch is going to be the guy in the front office pulling it all together and it just kind of worked out that way. But who knew? I’ll tell you what, for a team that has been notorious for its leaks in recent years, nobody knew anything about John Lynch being interested in this job and them being interested in him. I guess it’s a good litmus test for whether or not they’ve plugged their leaks. Now moving forward, we’ll see if they can win some football games.
Cris Carter, FS1: This is a great opportunity for John. John is a great guy. But do you know how many quality scouts, how many grunt people who have been working years and years for this opportunity? They passed over a lot of good people. Forget about the minority candidates. … February 3, 2013, San Francisco was in the Super Bowl. They were in the Super Bowl. Now they are a million miles away from that day where they are today. Now, I hope John is successful. But this is a job, there’s only a few of them. It’s just like a head coach and you (can’t) go out on the street and get a guy to be a good head coach in the NFL. I think they could’ve hired a lot more competent people. I hope he’s successful. But when you look at it, do they really know what they’re doing?
Eric Mangini, FS1: When you have no experience, there are so many things that are going to come up. Who are they going to bounce those ideas off of? Is (Mike Shanahan) going to be on speed dial? Someone has to articulate a vision of that organization. Is it coming from Kyle? Is it coming from John? Whose going to make those decisions? What are they drawing from?
Peter King, CBS Radio: This is all about trying to hit a home run instead of trying to hit a ground-rule double. That’s what it comes down to. Jed York believes that the marriage — and I’ve always believed this for a long time. When there are these arranged marriages between a coach and a general manager, a coach shows up and they say, ‘Hey. Here’s your general manager.’ (Those are) the two most important people in a franchise other than the quarterback. Here’s the two most important people and they barely know each other? … The reason why I think John Lynch has a chance — I’ve always thought this about him and I know him well — he knows what he doesn’t know. He’s not going in there ordering people around. He’s going in there saying, ‘Take me under your wing and teach me how to scout.’
Colin Cowherd, FS1: We’re getting to a point with San Francisco, they are surprising us with every move. They fired Jim Harbaugh — whoa, what’s going on? They hired Jim Tomsula with no coaching experience — what’s going on? They hired Chip and then fired Chip in a year — what’s going on? And now they hire a GM with no experience. I understand over the course of 10 years if you make one surprise move. When you’ve made five in four years, it generally shows me whether it’s a family or a business or a football team, it reeks of a little desperation.
Jason La Canfora, CBS Sports: They are going to sell the John Elway paradigm. Lynch is a smart guy like Elway; he was a Northern California guy; he was a part of winning teams; he has a high football intellect; he’s been around the game forever. And look at Elway did in Denver. I would counter that by saying look at what Matt Millen did in Detroit. We can’t pretend that we know there’s a model that’s going to be replicated. I don’t know that they are going to be able to turn the clock back and make Peyton Manning 35 years old again as a free agent and have him dropped in John Lynch’s basket. I don’t think that’s happening. There isn’t a Von Miller on that roster. Go look at the two drafts before Elway really took personnel control. Brian Xanders killed it there. There was an influx of talent. That roster was much more on the cusp than San Francisco is.