I'm posting this separately since it will be too lengthy to be included as a comment within a thread.
First, a couple of questions and answers from Mike Sando's Thursday Chat:
Question: "Let's assume Trent Baalke is hired as the new SF GM. Do you measure the correctness of Jed York's decision by which coach is then brought on? For example, if Harbaugh comes to the 49ers then York made the right decision to promote Baalke."
Answer (Sando): "I'll be looking to see to what degree Jed York is aware of his own limitations. They need strong leadership, not someone York can control."
My Comment: Gee Mike, why don't you tell us what you really think!
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Question: "Who do you think that the 49ers perceive as the dream team for GM / Coach?"
Answer (Sando): "I do not know how much they really want to shake things up. If they are headed toward retaining Trent Baalke, then it looks like they either could not or did not want to make significant changes. Jed York has no incentive to sacrifice his own power / influence. I have a hard time envisioning a big-time 'name' coach reporting to him, frankly."
My translation: Jed, if you really want to resurrect the franchise and retain a do-something, turn-it-around coach, you better hire a REAL, knowledgeble GM to work with him, then get the hell out of the way. Don't assume that you are football-smarter than others; be willing to hire, then watch and learn from, a superior GM. If you want to keep Baalke, fine, keep him on the road evaluating player talent and away from "running the team."
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Then, a comment from Tim Kavanagh, pro football writer for ESPN Insider:
"The decision on a GM will have a great impact on which head coach will come take over, as the relationship between the two men will be vital to building the franchise."
My Comment: First and foremost I want Jim Harbaugh as our next coach because he has demonstrated at least twice that he has the leadership skills and know-how to turn a bad football program around; further, he has demonstrated his ability to develop and mentor young QBs. THOSE are the qualities that we need. Beyond that, he has a strong sense of offensive system and the ability to be a superior tactician. What else could we possibly want?
Many "pundits" seem to believe that York wants Harbaugh as his next coach. Don't know whether that's true or not, but IF it is, why not discuss alternative GM candidates with JH? He's the guy who will have to work most closely with the new GM. Why not get his opinion? If Jed had that input to the GM decision it might help him to make the "right" decision. Beyond that, a "right decision" with respect to the GM position might help JH to decide that Jed is serious about turning the ship around and encourage him to accept the captaincy of that effort. No thoughtful HC, who has multiple opportunities, would want to work within the FO structure that has been in place for the past decade.
It's you choice, Jed. Do you really want a revived, winning, well-respected organization? Or, do you want to be the know-it-all who continues to head up a disfunctional, irrelavant team? YOU CAN'T HAVE IT BOTH WAYS! As a LONG time fan I hope that you have the guts that your uncle did in 1978.