The San Francisco 49ers have a new addition to the Pro Football Hall of Fame. On Tuesday, the Hall received their first artifacts from the 2017 NFL season, and the 49ers are a notable part of it. The Hall received the coaching binder and shirt worn by 49ers assistant coach Katie Sowers. She is the second ever regular season full-time female coach, and the first in the NFC. She is also the first ever openly gay coach in NFL history.
Sowers joined the 49ers this summer as part of the Bill Walsh Coaching Fellowship. She worked with the wide receivers, and when camp ended, Shanahan figured out a spot for her on the full-time coaching staff. She made her regular season coaching debut as the seasonal offensive assistant during Week 1 against the Carolina Panthers.
Prior to this season, Sowers spent the 2016 offseason and training camp in the same Bill Walsh fellowship capacity with the Atlanta Falcons. With the Falcons, she worked closely with Atlanta assistant head coach/wide receivers coach Raheem Morris in organizing, conducting, and concluding practice drills. She worked in the Falcons front office during the regular season.
Jen Welter was the first female to coach in the NFL when she coached for the Arizona Cardinals during the 2015 preseason and Kathyrn Smith, a member of the Buffalo Bills staff in 2016, was the league’s first full-time female coach.