Matt Maiocco had an interesting article on Friday in which he discussed the experience involved in Jim Tomsula's developing coaching staff. MM was focusing on the assistant coaches, but he also had an interesting comment about San Francisco 49ers president Paraag Marathe.
Also, 49ers president Paraag Marathe will play a big role in Tomsula's transition to calling the shots from the sideline. Years ago, Marathe devised a game-management guide that includes such information as when to call timeouts while trailing late in a game and whether to kneel or run plays while protecting a lead. Marathe has constantly re-worked his formulas.
His article naturally brought out some reactions from people wondering what this might mean. Given the question marks surrounding the 49ers power structure and who is running what aside from Trent Baalke, it is not surprising that this would elicit a reaction. At first glance, this would come across as micro-management in the worst way.
However, there is a little more context. Maiocco sent this follow-up tweet:
It is safe to say a team president is usually not involved in game-day game management. However, Marathe is no ordinary team president. He got his start on the analytics side, and has previous involvement in the coaches' booth. Jim Harbaugh did not want that, and so Harbaugh and his crew (eventually including Eric Mangini in 2013) handled that sort of thing. Harbaugh did have his game management chart,
and it remains to be seen what Marathe's influence was on the game-day chart. Fooch's Note: Got some clarification that the chart was used by Harbaugh, Singletary and Nolan.
The 49ers have had a long history of poor game management. Whether it be some bad challenges, or struggling with timeouts, the 49ers have had all sorts of problems over the years. While it felt particularly bad under Harbaugh, the problems pre-dated him to a certain extent. It remains to be seen if Marathe learned from his earlier experience, but given his analytical background, it will be worth tracking what he does in his second run in this kind of position.
We don't necessarily know for certain how active he will be on game day, but given the dynamics involved, it seems safe to say it will be more than in the past. Considering how bad game management has been at times, ideally it won't in fact get worse.