It certainly does seem weird to say “49ers GM John Lynch,” but that is indeed the case after a surprising decision on Sunday. The San Francisco 49ers named John Lynch their general manager, and he will begin the process of formally assembling his staff.
The organization will retain a lot of their front office over the next three months leading up to the 2017 NFL Draft, and those individuals will get a chance to prove themselves to the new GM. Assistant general manager Tom Gamble is one of those people, according to Matt Maiocco.
I'm hearing #49ers GM John Lynch will give assistant GM Tom Gamble chance through the draft to prove he should remain with the organization.— Matt Maiocco (@MaioccoCSN) January 30, 2017
Gamble has been part of the 49ers organization for 10 of the past 12 years, serving in a range of roles. After spending 1998 to 2004 as a college scout for the Indianapolis Colts, Gamble joined the 49ers in 2005 as director of pro personnel. In 2010, the team gave him some additional responsibilities in collegiate scouting before promoting him to director of player personnel in 2012.
Gamble left the 49ers in 2013 to be closer to his father, who was dealing with ailing health. He spent 2013 and 2014 serving as the Philadelphia Eagles VP of player personnel. After his father passed, Gamble was fired by the Eagles as part of Howie Roseman’s power struggle with Chip Kelly. Gamble returned to the 49ers in 2015 as a senior personnel executive. He was promoted to assistant general manager last offseason.
Three weeks ago, socalisteph wrote that Gamble remained on Jed York’s mind. York had said the team would hire an external person as general manager, but the work Gamble had done for the organization had York wanting to hire someone who had that kind of work ethic and general skill.
Now, we get to wait and see if Lynch decides he wants to keep Gamble on board. Lynch will need to surround himself with strong football minds. His connection with Mark Dominik could result in a hiring, but it would not surprise me if Gamble hung around for the time being. Maybe Gamble departs for another job in the future, but Jed York remains a fan. I would like to hope John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan will handle the hiring, but keeping around Gamble as an advisor would not be a bad decision.