The Green Bay Packers formally announced the hiring of Matt LaFleur as their next head coach on Tuesday, replacing Mike McCarthy with the recent Titans offensive coordinator. LaFleur has begun filling out his coaching staff, but it will likely not include his brother Mike. Matt Maiocco reported on Monday that Mike LaFleur, wide receivers coach and passing game coordinator for the San Francisco 49ers, would not be headed to Green Bay.
It’s difficult to break down who is responsible for what on offense given Kyle Shanahan’s influence on that side of the ball. That being said, it was certainly an interesting season for the 49ers receivers and passing game as a whole.
The veterans, Pierre Garçon and Marquise Goodwin, both took a step back. Garçon dealt with injuries throughout the season before finally ending up on injured reserve, and is a candidate to be released this offseason. Goodwin struggled with consistency amidst a family issue.
Meanwhile, second-year receiver Kendrick Bourne and rookie Dante Pettis both showed signs of emerging as significant options. Bourne replaced Garçon in the starting lineup, while Pettis eventually took over Goodwin’s role. They finished second and third on the team in receiving, with Pettis emerging as a hot option before hurting his knee.
This is a big offseason for the 49ers defense, but we will likely also see the team add some kind of pass catching option. It might be a tight end to complement George Kittle, or it could be a young receiver in the draft. Additionally, Richie James and Steven Dunbar are two young receivers that will need to take a step forward this offseason to fend off potential challengers. LaFleur will be plenty busy heading into the offseason workout program and then training camp.