No profession puts someone in a pressure cooker like being the head coach of an NFL franchise. For Kyle Shanahan that pressure has been moved to the highest setting.
Shanahan is considered among the brightest offensive minds in the NFL. Year after year, Shanahan’s offenses are near the top of the league in total yards with a number of highlight reel plays. This has led to a number of young coaches with experience working under Shanahan being handed the keys to franchises the past few years.
While moving the ball up and down the field and making exciting plays is nice, Kyle Shanahan’s offenses have struggled in the two categories that matter most, scoring points and winning games.
Through 13 seasons in the NFL as an offensive coordinator or head coach, Shanahan’s offenses have managed to crack the top half of the league in scoring a grand total of four times, the same number of times that his teams have finished with a winning record.
When this is brought up, those who believe in Shanahan will quickly point to the fact that he’s never had “his guy" at quarterback. With the 49ers trading three first-rounders and one third-round draft pick to the Miami Dolphins to move up to No. 3 in April’s NFL draft, Shanahan will have his guy and all of the expectations that come with it.
The consensus top 5 quarterbacks are Trevor Lawrence, Zach Wilson, Justin Fields, Trey Lance and Mac Jones. Out of those five, the only one that appears to definitely be out of play for San Francisco is Lawrence. Jacksonville head coach, Urban Meyer has already stated that Lawrence will be their selection at the top of the draft.
When the 49ers selection comes up, at lease three of those remaining quarterbacks will be available, and Kyle Shanahan needs to get it right. His legacy in San Francisco depends on it.