Offensive assistant Katie Sowers, who broke gender barriers by becoming the first female coach to make it to the Super Bowl in 2020, will not return to the San Francisco 49ers just one season removed from that accomplishment. This comes courtesy of the Mercury News, with reporter Cam Inman breaking the news Thursday.
Sowers, who worked closely with receivers coach Wes Welker during her tenure in San Francisco, confirmed the report to Inman through text message. The 34-year-old then posted on Instagram about her departure.
According to multiple reports, Sowers is looking for an expanded role in her next job.
She became the second woman in NFL history to work as a full-time assistant coach -- the first was Kathryn Smith with the Buffalo Bills in 2016-- and the first openly gay coach in the league's history. Her start began with the Atlanta Falcons through the Bill Walsh Diversity Coaching Fellowship, where she worked with Kyle Shanahan when he was the team's offensive coordinator.
One season after Shanahan became the 49ers head coach, Sowers joined him in San Francisco and was hired as a full-time assistant in 2018. She attributed the coach's faith in her for the pioneering hire.
"I think I allowed him to see who I am, what my dreams were, what my goals were and [Shanahan] truly believed in diversity within the NFL and he was happy to help me, which I am so grateful for," she said before the Super Bowl. "He truly became a mentor, taught me the culture and really led me to where I am."