The San Francisco 49ers finally ended the Chip Kelly experiment in San Francisco. The 49ers finished a dismal 2-14 this season and had a historically bad defense. Shaking up the organization further the 49ers also dismissed general manager Trent Baalke. Now, in a complete reboot, the 49ers are facing a series of crucial decisions. The first of which will likely be to find a head coach. There seem to be a number of available head coaching prospects this year. Below are some of San Francisco’s most interesting possible candidates.
San Francisco 49ers Head Coaching Candidates
Josh McDaniels has to be one of the hottest NFL head coaching candidates. His successes with the New England Patriots in multiple stints are well known. McDaniels did have one brief head coaching try with the Denver Broncos from 2009-2010. He left Denver with a disappointing 11-17 record, and spent one season with the St. Louis Rams before landing back in New England.
As an offensive coordinator McDaniels has won four Super Bowls. The question is whether or not McDaniels’ success is strictly tied to his mentor Bill Belichick. One advantage McDaniels does have is that San Francisco is considering Louis Riddick for the general manager position. Riddick has often spoken highly of McDaniels on ESPN and would surely want to link up with him if hired by the 49ers. McDaniels was previously interviewed by the 49ers in 2010, but that was the year the team hired Jim Harbaugh.
Anthony Lynn is another head coaching candidate that San Francisco has already shown interest in. Lynn was interviewed by the team last season while he was still a running backs coach with the Buffalo Bills. This past season Lynn was promoted to offensive coordinator once Greg Roman was fired after Week two. Lynn then served as interim coach for the Bills in the final week of the season after the firing of Rex Ryan. Lynn comes from a good coaching tree with names such as Bill Parcells, Mike Shanahan, and Jack Del Rio.
If hired, Lynn will bring the 49ers back to a run-first style offense. Lynn was a running back in the league behind Terrell Davis during his prime and won two Super Bowls. He would be a great fit for San Francisco’s most potent offensive weapon, Carlos Hyde. There is also the possibility of Lynn improving the 49ers quarterback situation if hired. Reports out of western New York are that Lynn could bring Tyrod Taylor with him if he were to leave Buffalo.
Another coaching candidate who could potentially be linked to a quarterback is Sean McVay. McVay maybe be able to lure Kirk Cousins to San Francisco if he were not able to agree to a contract with the Washington Redskins. Cousins is at the very least an improvement over San Francisco’s current situation. McVay is considered by some experts to be something of a coaching prodigy.
McVay is the grandson of former 49ers executive John McVay. John McVay was in office with the 49ers during the successes they had with Bill Walsh in the 1980s. There are questions though as to whether Sean McVay has the experience necessary to operate in a head coaching capacity. Hopefully, the 49ers are not reaching backwards with this candidate. There are no guarantees Sean McVay’s lineage will bring future success.