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Bears hire Richard Hightower after tumultuous special teams season

Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images

After a season in which the 49ers’ special teams unit had some horrific performances, there were real questions about whether special teams coordinator Richard Hightower would keep his job in Santa Clara.

Despite the outstanding, game-winning performance against the Packers’ last-place special teams unit in the playoffs, the 49ers’ special teams group struggled all season, ranking 26th in defense-adjusted value over average, a measurement that ranks a unit’s performance.

The 49ers ranked 11th, 14th, 12th, 23rd and then 26th in that category from the time Hightower started in 2017.

Hightower will take the same post with the Chicago Bears, the team announced over the weekend.

That means at least three prominent coaches in Hightower, offensive coordinator Mike McDaniel and assistant head coach/tight ends coach Jon Embree will depart this offseason, with Anthony Lynn reportedly entering to fill the assistant head coach role Embree is vacating.

McDaniel, is taking the head coaching job with the Miami Dolphins, and is likely to take some of the 49ers’ staff with him.

 

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