clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Is there friction between John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan?

Is this a non-issue?

If you were anywhere near the internet on Tuesday, you may have come across Matt Miller of Bleacher Report and his report that there was friction between San Francisco 49ers general manager John Lynch and head coach Kyle Shanahan.

This wasn’t a tweet or an individual article, it was in an article that encompasses the entire league with news tidbits. Once that hit, the collective groans began. Here we go again; history repeating itself from that whole Trent Baalke/Jim Harbaugh mess.

Except it might not be. Once it hit, some of the beat writers gave us what they know. The first of which was Matt Maiocco.

That was Matt Maiocco’s first reaction and he’s as close to the 49ers as you might get. A short-time later Maiocco got this texted response from Shanahan:

From there, things opened up:

When the Jim Harbaugh/Trent Baalke feud went down, Tim Kawakami was at the front of the reporting. Other reports followed from across the media indicating that whatever was built beforehand was getting torn down in 2014. While there were rebuttals, that situation was not the same as this. It felt like everyone was taken off-guard when a random PFT report showed up saying Harbaugh almost got traded to the Cleveland Browns.

If there really was friction, Shanahan and Lynch certainly deserve Oscars. If you watch the draft videos of the 49ers, the two seem to be quite civil and joining in on the fun when they get certain players (like the Aussie chant when they grabbed Mitch Wishnowsky). Harbaugh and Baalke were reported to not even want to be on an elevator together.

That said, The Harbaugh/Baalke tension came from out of nowhere in the 2014 offseason. All it took was a report of the aforementioned trade to kick things off and let everything pile on. Many may have denied the initial reports week after week, but there was no denying that something was very, very wrong as that season progressed, but the first three seasons? Not a peep.

This might have come from out of nowhere as well, and has the makings of more drama, but it doesn’t have the same explosive components as those reports from 2014. Unless you count selecting a punter in the 4th round of the 2019 NFL Draft as something very, very wrong.

Keep in mind, it also doesn’t mean that someone didn’t say it or that Miller’s report has no truth to it. The 49ers have had their pipes cleaned and tightened and the leakage has much improved since Baalke was let go as Kawakami said above. It all could boil down to someone, whether it’s a coach or scout, saying something they shouldn’t have. Given the responses, whatever you think is true or significant is up to you.