The San Francisco 49ers have zeroed in on Atlanta Falcons' offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan during their head coaching search, but the franchise and the team's management have yet to reach a consensus on who should replace Trent Baalke as the 49ers' general manager.
According to reports from around the NFL, the 49ers plan to offer Shanahan the team's head coaching job once the Falcons' season comes to an end, but they aren't set on who will serve as the team's new general manager.
However, according to reports, Arizona Cardinals' vice president of player personnel Terry McDonough is one of the four finalists for the general manager job, remaining in contention for the position after a handful of interested parties the 49ers interviewed were told they wouldn't receive a second interview.
McDonough has worked with the Cardinals under general manager Steve Keim for the past four seasons, including three in his current role. He's spent a quarter century in the NFL as a scout and actually began his NFL career back in 1989 as a scouting intern with the 49ers. That season, San Francisco went 14-2 and defeated the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl.
The 49ers announced on Friday, January 13 that they interviewed McDonough for the job, and on Wednesday, reports surfaced suggesting McDonough is one of four candidates who will receive a second interview with San Francisco. The other three candidates are Brian Gutekunst, the director of player personnel with the Green Bay Packers, Eliot Wolf, the director of football operations for the Green Bay Packers, and George Paton, the assistant general manager with the Minnesota Vikings.
From the outset of the 49ers' search, reports indicated team owner Jed York wanted to find a general manager and head coach who fit other other stylistically, and on Friday, Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area reported that if hired, McDonough preferred for Shanahan to serve as the team's head coach.
If McDonough winds up landing the 49ers' job, it would represent a significant loss for the Cardinals' organization as McDonough has played a pivotal role in aiding Keim and head coach Bruce Arians in the development of the team's roster.
McDonough would also become the second member of the Cardinals' front office to accept a general manager job since Keim took over in 2013, as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers hired Jason Licht, the Cardinals' former vice president of player personnel, away from the franchise in 2014.