The San Francisco 49ers are set to formally announce former Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan as their new head coach at a press conference on Thursday.
Shanahan, fresh off a late-game meltdown against the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LI, arrived in the Bay Area on Wednesday and was greeted by 49ers CEO Jed York.
The offensive wiz goes from heading one of the most-talented units in the NFL to a 49ers team that won two games this past season and is ways away from contention in the NFC West.
It’s in this that Shanahan sent a pretty clear message to 49ers fans the world over.
It's good to have you back in the Bay Area!
— San Francisco 49ers (@49ers) February 8, 2017
“Give us some time, be patient with us,” Shanahan said on Wednesday. “I promise you guys we’re going to work as hard as anyone and do things the right way with good people, high character guys. It’s going to be a lot of work, tough work, but I promise you guys it’ll be worth it. And we’ll do this right way and make you guys proud and will not let you guys down. (I) look forward to talking to you all.”
Shanahan and new 49ers general manager John Lynch both inked six-year contracts on Wednesday. They are now the brains behind the scenes in San Francisco, a tandem the 49ers hope rebuilds the once proud franchise. The simple fact that both received uncharacteristic six-year deals suggests San Francisco’s brass is preparing for a long-term rebuild.
It’s also a clear indication that Jed York and Co. had to offer more stability in order to bring on top-level guys after going through three head coaches in as many years.
Despite boasting the second overall pick in this year’s draft and a projected $100 million in cap room, the 49ers won’t be able to rebuild their talent-stricken roster overnight. At the very least, Shanahan fully understands that’s not the ultimate goal. Whether the fans understand this is a completely different story.