Esteemed Mercury News columnist Tim Kawakami made a rare appearance on KNBR Monday night with Ray Woodson.
The first half of the interview centered around Kyle Shanahan’s failures in the Super Bowl, but also his brilliance as a play caller for nearly the entire 2016.
Then the conversation shifted to Jed York, where Kawakami was willing to give the CEO some acknowledgment for his latest reboot of the 49ers, including GM John Lynch.
“I’m sure the intent is for these guys to run the show, be the guys out front for years and years and years,” Kawakami said. “Of course, that was exactly what (York) thought Trent Baalke was, and that’s what he thought Chip Kelly was, and that’s what he thought Jim Tomsula was. And we can go all the way through this. He didn’t want Jim Harbaugh to be this, and whoops, he’s the guy fans would’ve bought forever.
“But I do believe he wants John Lynch, especially John Lynch, to be the guy explaining things. To be the guy who can communicate and connect with fans, with media, with whoever. And he probably shouldn’t do it in the off the record sort of way which this franchise is now famous for. Do it upfront. Do it in person. Because you know you can. Instead of ducking under tables, and texting to your buddies, and undermining your coach, and all those things we’ve seen from the last three years from the 49ers. But the intent is good. Now, we’ll see. Because Jed York and Paraag Marathe are the ones who’ve done it the last few years. And they’re still there. They’re the ones who hired these guys.
“I’ll give Jed York the credit for meaning well in this search and we’ll see if he does it. Although, I was thinking today, didn’t all of his national buddies say God, didn’t they set themselves up perfectly? They are the only general manager opening — now it turned out Indianapolis had one late — but for most of this process the 49ers had the only GM opening. ‘So they are going to get a great, really well qualified guy,’ right? ‘They are interviewing all these incredibly well qualified guys,’ right? ‘They are set up perfectly!’
“And what do they do? They hired the guy who had no qualifications for this job. So they took some turns here that I don’t think Jed foresaw. But that’s okay. Again, open minds are good. The offseason is about convincing people you have plans — and you know, convincing your players. That’s not the least of this. And I do believe, most of the guys that can convince a locker room to do things, can also convince the public. If you can’t convince the public, you probably can’t convince the locker room. And you know, it’s all one big test. And the first one we’ll see is whenever they do this press conference for Kyle Shanahan.”