John Lynch Named 49ers GM: Latest Contract Details, Comments and Reaction

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 30, 2017

TAMPA, FL - NOVEMBER 3: Former Safety John Lynch of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers address the fans during his induction in the team's Ring of Honor during half-time of the game against the Atlanta Falcons at Raymond James Stadium on November 3, 2016 in Tampa, Florida. Lynch was played with the Buccaneers from 1993 to 2003. The Falcons defeated the Buccaneers 43 to 28. (Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)
Don Juan Moore/Getty Images

The San Francisco 49ers made a surprising move Sunday, announcing they hired Fox analyst and former NFL safety John Lynch to be their new general manager.

Adam Schefter of ESPN reported the team will give Lynch a six-year deal.

The 45-year-old spent 15 years in the NFL with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Denver Broncos and is a finalist for the Hall of Fame.

Niners CEO Jed York issued a statement on the Lynch hire on Monday.

"During his 15 seasons as an NFL player, John epitomized what is so special about the game of football," York said. "A world-class competitor, his love and respect for the sport are unmatched, and you would be hard-pressed to find anyone in league circles who does not have great respect for his work ethic and passion.

"Having already helped lead a team to a Super Bowl title as a player, John is equipped with tremendous insight into what it takes to create a culture that breeds sustained success. Having spent the last eight seasons as an analyst with Fox, he has honed his skills as a talented communicator while also developing valuable relationships around the league and a vast knowledge of the NFL that will be beneficial to our team. As we learned more and more about John, it became apparent that he was not only one of the best to ever play this game but also a Hall of Fame caliber man, one who people are compelled to follow."

The 49ers have not yet officially hired a head coach, but according to Mike Silver of NFL.com, Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan is expected to land the job. The team cannot offer him the position until Atlanta's season ends, which will be after the Super Bowl. According to Schefter, the 49ers plan to offer a six-year deal to tie the combination together for the long term.

ESPN's Jim Trotter reported on Monday Lynch will have "final say" over the draft, free agency and 90-man roster while Shanahan will have say over their 53-man roster.

Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com noted Lynch stayed at 49ers owner Jed York's house Thursday and flew with the team to meet with Shanahan in Atlanta.

Shanahan met with the 49ers on Friday, according to Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle, along with potential general manager candidates George Paton and Terry McDonough, both of whom have the front-office experience Lynch lacks. The organization also interviewed ESPN's Louis Riddick, who also spent time as a scout.

However, Lynch got the job through what was a secret process, as NFL Network's Ian Rapoport described:

Ian Rapoport @RapSheet

The #49ers identified John Lynch weeks ago as a potential GM. He wouldn't go through with it unless it remained secret. Secret no longer.

According to Schefter, Lynch called Shanahan directly and "volunteered for the job."

Shannon Sharpe of Fox Sports 1 apparently wants a job through the same means:

shannon sharpe @ShannonSharpe

What NFL tm wants to give me a chance to build their franchise into a winner as a GM. 😂😂😂.

While Lynch lacks experience at this level, he is reportedly already set to hire help, per Pro Football Talk:

ProFootballTalk @ProFootballTalk

Per source new 49ers G.M. John Lynch will hire a personnel specialist as his No. 2. He already knows who it will be.

Interestingly, Lynch has been critical of Shanahan in the past, via John Middlekauff of 95.7 The Game:

John Middlekauff @JohnMiddlekauff

John Lynch said "Kyle comes off arrogant in his interviews" - I've heard that as well. Hasn't come off well during this process

Lynch played for Shanahan's father, Mike, for four years as a member of the Broncos.


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