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2016 will be a make-or-break season for 49ers GM Trent Baalke

The San Francisco 49ers are beginning their coaching search, and it sounds like general manager Trent Baalke will lead it. This would seemingly make 2016 a slightly huge year for Baalke.

The San Francisco 49ers have formally fired head coach Jim Tomsula, and the head coach search is officially on. Kyle McLorg reported earlier today that Trent Baalke will handle the entire coaching search process, and Jed York will stand aside.

There was some question about Baalke's job security today, and really in recent weeks. The belief is that Trent Baalke's job is safe, but when Jay Glazer reported on Tomsula likely being fired, one concern was if the 49ers could find a coach who would work with Baalke. Additionally, Jed York's biggest fans, Ted Robinson and Tim Ryan, have harped lately on the problems with the roster, and the situation in which Tomsula was placed.

We'll find out more for certain on Monday, but from what I am hearing, Trent Baalke is likely not going anywhere. Kyle's report suggested Baalke was safe for another year, and a league source has intimated as much to me. I was told that 49ers senior staff are not expecting to find out their future until after Super Bowl 50 is a wrap. If Trent Baalke was going to get canned, it would happen between now and tomorrow. And I suspect given that Tomsula was formally fired tonight, Baalke would be as well.

This is not exactly shocking news, but all of this will put Trent Baalke firmly on the hot seat if the team struggles next year. If Baalke is handling the full search process, 2016 is a make-or-break season for him. If the team struggles to a .500 or worse record, my guess is he would be fired at the end of the season. Well, I believe he is actually under contract through next season, so he simply might not get a contract extension. The coaching search process is underway, but there could be quite the long game to consider with this story.