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Still in recovery mode from the disastrous Chip Kelly tenure, the 49ers are looking to rebuild. While the Kelly era lasted one season in San Francisco, it felt much longer to fans. Going 2-14, the 49ers went through a major overhaul. Introducing former NFL player John Lynch as General Manager, the 49ers were able to snag Kyle Shanahan away from the Redskins to take over as head coach. Son of Super Bowl champion coach Mike Shanahan, Kyle has the pedigree and experience necessary to get the job done.
Early moves in the new Shanahan era were all about stopping the bleeding. Colin Kaepernick opted out of his contract, allowing the team to move on. Multiple incremental upgrades at quarterback have yielded Jimmy Garoppolo on the roster, via a mid-season blockbuster trade with the New England Patriots. Bay area fans are hopeful that the beginning of the Garoppolo era will signify a major course correction for the team. Playing in only the final five games of the season, he is undefeated as a 49er.
Additionally, the team has released wide receiver Torrey Smith and signed Pierre Garcon to take his spot. Locking up Marquise Goodwin in free agency, Garoppolo has some decent passing targets. Tight End George Kittle also plays a big factor on offense. Former Super Bowl MVP Malcolm Smith was added to the defense (although he became injured prior to the season) and accurate veteran kicker Robbie Gould signed on, showing the 49ers faithful that the management is serious about getting better in a hurry.
There is a history of success in the Bay Area from which to draw inspiration. San Francisco has won five Super Bowls in their history. Three were under the Hall of Fame Coach Bill Walsh, and two more under his successor, George Seifert.
Notable players to have laced up in the iconic red, white, and gold uniforms include some of the best the NFL has ever had to offer in Joe Montana, Jerry Rice, Steve Young, Ronnie Lott, and Roger Craig. For more about the San Francisco 49ers and their history, click here.