Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ Kyle Shanahan on competitive NFC West: ‘We don’t give a damn about those other teams’

Jun 5, 2019 at 9:33 PM--

Experts predict the NFC West to be a competitive division in 2019, especially if the San Francisco 49ers can turn the corner. The Los Angeles Rams are coming off back-to-back playoff runs and earned a trip to the Super Bowl in February. The Seattle Seahawks, even amid doubt, continue to field a competitive squad. The Arizona Cardinals look to turn things around with new head coach Kliff Kingsbury.

49ers coach Kyle Shanahan was onstage for the team's annual State of the Franchise event on Wednesday night and was asked about the competitive NFC West and the message he gives his team as it prepares for the 2019 season.

"Well, the first thing is we don't give a damn about those other teams," Shanahan responded as the crowd of about 1,000 fans cheered. "We care about us, and we care about playing the best we possibly can, and we've had times at that.

"What I will say, going into our third year, when we came here, we knew what was ahead of us, and we knew we had to flip a lot of things. To give you guys an example, we have 90 guys on our roster right now. There's only 10 guys who were here before two years ago."

Shanahan noted that only Joe Staley remains among the offensive starters who were in place when he and Lynch arrived. Defensive tackle DeForest Buckner, safety Jaquiski Tartt, and defensive back Jimmie Ward are the defensive starters still on the roster.

"So there's been a lot of turnover that's taken a lot of work to get to this point," Shanahan continued, "and we really feel like those first couple of years, it was hard work to change the entire foundation of the team. But we really set out this year to get some difference makers, and we feel we did."

The 49ers added two pass rushers in veteran Dee Ford and rookie Nick Bosa. They added Tevin Coleman and potentially created one of the deepest groups of running backs in the league.

"Now we feel like we can compete, we can handle some injuries," Shanahan said. "Injuries are a part of football, and we've had some bad luck these last two years. But now — it's going to happen at times again — we hope we have better luck. But regardless of what happens, we have the depth, we have the people that we can compete and have a chance to win every Sunday.

"We expect to coach our best, play our best, and we expect to win every Sunday."

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