Blog Entry

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

Posted on: December 28, 2010 6:21 pm
Edited on: December 28, 2010 9:48 pm
Posted by Andy Benoit

Young 49ers owner Jed York has indicated that he will hire a GM to run the football operations in San Francisco. Included in those operations will be deciding on a new head coach.

York is making it known that he plans on delegating the football decisions to a “footbJ. Gruden (US Presswire)all guy”. Still, as the owner of J. Harbaugh (US Presswire)the team, his preferences and wishes will inevitably trickle down to the front office. This is why many, including Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News, believe York will hire a GM who can lure either Jon Gruden or Jim Harbaugh to the Bay Area.

Both of those head coaches are in high demand, and both have working experience in Northern California (Gruden with the Raiders, Harbaugh in his current position running the Stanford program). Harbaugh has suggested that he doesn’t plan on changing jobs, but with his team playing in the Orange Bowl January 3, what else would you expect him to say at this point? We have great reason to believe Gruden would be interested in the job – his son said a few weeks ago that the plan has been for Dad to go to either San Fran or Cleveland in 2012.

As for GM candidates who would work well with either of these two coaches, Kawakami offers a few names:

-George Kokinis (current Baltimore personnel exec, former Cleveland GM, a fit with Harbaugh via Harbaugh’s brother, John, the head coach in Baltimore);

-Mike Lombardi (NFL Network analyst, worked with both Gruden and Harbaugh with the Raiders, and with Gruden with the Eagles);

-Bruce Allen (current Washington GM tied to Mike Shanahan, which is swiftly becoming a sour situation; unlikely Redskins will fire both men, but Allen might be looking for an out; he has very close ties with Gruden and could be a perfect do-it-all-exec to work with Harbaugh);

-Trent Baalke and Tommy Gamble (in-house 49ers’ potentials who are seen as potential relationship gap-fillers–they already know Jed, understand the roster, and one or both might be able to reach out and “York-ize” Harbaugh or Gruden).

There was an Associated Press report Tuesday saying the Niners interviewed former Panthers/Rams executive Tony Softli.

The 49er job is one of the most enticing in football. Besides the history of the franchise and committed ownership (we think), there is a talented roster there that is one quarterback away from being a serious contender in the NFC.

UPDATE 8:00 p.m. ET: According to Pro Football Talk, Trent Baalke is “a lock” to get the Niners GM position. Baalke has been handling most of those duties since Scot McCloughan was fired in April. It is believed that the interview with Softli was, to be frank, merely a way to comply with the Rooney Rule.

UPDATE 9:48 p.m. ET: Peter King said on NBC's Tuesday Night Football halftime show that, according to his sources, Gruden is NOT a candidate for the 49ers job. Harbaugh is the hottest name.

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 12, 2012 8:05 am

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: January 6, 2012 7:36 am
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 10, 2011 12:58 am

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

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Since: Nov 21, 2007
Posted on: December 29, 2010 2:29 pm

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

First, the article states "lure Jim Harbaugh to the Bay Area".  Isn't he already there?  Yes, I know, picky.
Second, if I were a 49er fan (and I am not), I would hope for Jim Harbaugh.  To me, he seems even keel, good organization skills, and ablilty to build a winner with his system given certain constraints (recruiting for Stanford is most definitely harder than recruiting for USC or most state universities due to academic requirements, etc).  Gruden?  To high-strung and egotistical.  Wasn't that 2 of Singletary's faults as a leader?  Just my 2 cents worth.

Since: Dec 19, 2010
Posted on: December 29, 2010 5:24 am

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

Baalke, and Paraag should be axed this week sometime.  They are two courtroom jesters and whoever they have hired has just screwed up.  Anyway, I'm not sure if Gruden is the best choice as his style is very "gung-ho" like Singletary.  Maybe a calmer presence is a better option at this point.  I don't know anything about Harbaugh but he might be a good choice.  Unfortunately my fallback team is the Chargers, sad and embarrassing time to be a football fan of these two dissappointments.  Smith should be terminated as well, the day which I will throw myself a party.  Bring in a QB and get this team to the playoffs where we belong.  Troy Smith should jump ship as well and for God's sake someone get rid of David Carr.

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: December 29, 2010 3:38 am

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

If Trent Baalke is a lock to be the GM then Jed York is a bigger fool than I thought him to be. York should fire Paarag and Baalke because they have had poor drafts (you can't blame everything on Mike Nolan or Scottie McLoughlan. Bruce Allen is a fool...if the 49ers go that route they might as well hire Vinnie Cerrato....yeah that Vinnie Cerrato who used to work with Carmen Policy way back when the 49ers were one of the best teams in the NFL. Mike Lombardi sounds intriguing. Reports that say the 49ers only talked to Tony Softli to comply with the Rooney Rule is a joke. There is no proof that they have nor the true reason behind it. Also saying that makes Softli look like a fool. The 49ers should not solicit advice from Bill Polian because how can you value advice from an owner who does not even know how to spell the name of the person he is ridiculing. Bill Polian, Sarah is spelled with an "h". The 49ers should seek advice from some sports writers....the ones that do know what they are talking about. Don't ask owners for advice because they are your competitors and you have to realize that they really don't want you to succeed.  George and Mike are intriguing choices only because of their history with Harbaugh and Gruden. After reading alot of comments from Steelers fans I do longer have a high opinion of Bill Cowher. If Steelers fans think that Cowher is an average coach at best then who am I to say differently. The 49ers need to hire a good GM who will help the 49ers draft good players.

Since: Oct 16, 2006
Posted on: December 28, 2010 11:30 pm

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

Win Win for us Duck/Niner fans -- gets Harbaugh out of the PAC and will improve the Niners.

Since: Oct 1, 2010
Posted on: December 28, 2010 7:16 pm

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

either man would be a big step up from the current situation. the niners under walsh were sticklers about attention to detail, which in my opinion is what it takes to be a champion. this years team seemed lost most of the time. we need a coach who will be precise in his planning and execution of his game plan. but a good cornerback would also help.

Since: Jan 22, 2007
Posted on: December 28, 2010 7:02 pm

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

No one's saying the roster is perfect save the quarterback spot (the secondary is a big concern), BUT with a decent quarterback these 49ers win the NFC West, at least.

Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: December 28, 2010 6:33 pm

SF's GM choice will have Gruden, Harbaugh in mind

The one thing I have a problem with about all these articles about the 49ers is the consistent bashing the quarterbacks take. Nobody ever mentions the fact that Nate Clements has been a complete embarrassment as a 49er. He's been the biggest joke of a cornerback in the NFL. The guy gets burned every single time a receiver goes down field. Sometimes he actually looks like he has no idea where he's supposed to be. There has only been a handful of players on that defense that have been any good(Willis, Spikes, Smith). The offensive line has been a joke this season. 
Anthony Davis got thrust into a position he isn't ready for and I've never seen a tackle get beat on more than half the plays he lines up for until this kid lined up for the 49ers this year. 
Stop pointing the blame at one position on the football field. Yes, the 49ers could use a better quarterback. But if the offensive line is as bad as they were this year, it won't matter what quarterback lines up behind them. Receivers like Crabtree could do a better job of catching the ball and running their routes properly. 
One position does not make a team. Football is a team game and every position is important to the team. When you have 90% of the team playing below their abilities for the entire year, you're going to be a bad team. 

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