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Kyle Shanahan talked with Rich Eisen about how he and John Lynch linked up

The 49ers head coach and GM seem to have a unique story to tell

The San Francisco 49ers wrapped up phase two of the offseason workout program this week, and will head into OTAs next week. In the meantime, head coach Kyle Shanahan took a few minutes on Friday to chat with Rich Eisen on his radio show. Shanahan was on for 12 minutes, and you can listen to the whole thing above. I’ve dropped in some time stamps at the bottom of the article.

They hit on a variety of topics, but my favorite part might have been Shanahan talking about how he and John Lynch first connected. Shanahan said they had “somewhat of a relationship” previously. Lynch has previously mentioned how they had connected from time-to-time when Lynch was calling games where Shanahan was the OC.

Eisen seemed to be under the impression Shanahan called Lynch, but Shanahan corrected that. We had heard about that in a report shortly after Lynch had been hired, and from Lynch himself. In this interview, Shanahan described Lynch calling him, and the surprise it brought that Lynch wanted to be a GM. It’s a fascinating dynamic, one I don’t think we’ve ever seen before. I don’t know the history of every GM/HC relationship in the NFL, but I would be surprised if we’ve seen anything go down like this before.

Here’s what Shanahan had to say:

No, actually, he reached out to me. I never knew that he was interested. John and I have somewhat of a relationship, just over the years talking. It was actually, I think it was the day before we played Green Bay in the playoffs, it was a Saturday. He actually texted me earlier in the week, he’s like, hey give me a call if you’ve got a chance. I told him, “I was a little busy, can I call you at the end of the week.” And he said, “yea, not a big deal, call me at the end of the week.”

So, I didn’t think it was that big of a deal, so I called him on Saturday, thinking it wasn’t much. Then he kinda dropped it on me — it came out of nowhere, so I really didn’t know what to expect. I sat there and I thought about it, man that really surprised me.

I got off the phone and went downstairs and talked to my wife. She asked, “what was that?” I said, “John Lynch just said he’d be interested in trying to be a general manager. And she was like, “What do you think about that?” I’m like, “I’m not totally sure, it kinda threw me off, but my feeling right now is, that’s the best thing I’ve heard.” I’m not completely excited because I gotta get ready for this game, but after the Green Bay game, Sunday night, let’s think about that more, and I’m gonna give him a call and talk some more about it.

It kinda shocked me because it came out of nowhere, but within a few minutes — you know, I was kinda stressed going through the whole process, trying to get ready for a playoff game, and all that. And not really spending much time thinking about the Niners and how that was gonna pan out. And then when John told me that, it took a lot of stress off me. I was like, that’s a hell of a deal.

0:08 - First football memory (watching The Drive, Broncos vs. Browns)
0:45 - First time in NFL locker room
1:22 - How first few weeks have gone with 49ers
2:14 - What film he’s watching
3:17 - How he and John Lynch first connected about the job
5:14 - How much he thinks about the Super Bowl
5:38 - Regrets on play-calling
6:18 - First round QBs he thought were most game-ready
7:48 - RG3 being a free agent and as a viable quarterback
9:23 - Having RG3 and Cousins being different QBs leading to issues
10:10 - What 49ers offense will look like