On Monday, ESPN’s NFL Insiders program spent a segment breaking down the six head coach openings. They saved the San Francisco 49ers for last, and I imagine part of it was due to Louis Riddick’s presence on the panel. Riddick is interviewing for the 49ers GM position, and the segment concluded with Suzy Kolber wishing him luck, and everybody sort of laughing about it.
But amidst all that, Riddick raised an interesting point. He mentioned how the GM and head coach are going to need to be able to work well together, and he gave a reason not previously mentioned. The comment came amidst suggestions Josh McDaniels might be the favorite for the job. If that is the case, the 49ers would not be able to officially sign him to a contract until the New England Patriots playoffs ended.
In having to wait for the playoffs to end, the team would be behind the curve in securing the next coaching staff. Additionally, the coach would not be there to work with his GM in sorting through the best options in free agency and the draft. If the 49ers did hire McDaniels, and worst case, it happened after the Super Bowl, that would be early February. There is still time to do plenty of work, but the earlier the GM can know what his head coach wants, the better.
Earlier this week, CSN Bay Area had some comments from Riddick about needing a strong relationship between coach and GM due to the huge scale of the 49ers re-build. That and this both continue to suggest Riddick would be looking to have Josh McDaniels as his head coach in Santa Clara.