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Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports


Peter King names 49ers’ Kyle Shanahan his Coach of the Week

Nov 29, 2021 at 11:01 AM--


The San Francisco 49ers have managed to turn things around in recent weeks, winning three of their last four games and scoring 30-or-more points in each of those victories. It's been quite a turnaround for a team that looked to be spiraling downward about a month ago. If the season ended today, the 49ers would be No. 6 seed in the NFC and are now just a game back of the Los Angeles Rams, who have lost three straight.

Much of the credit for the 49ers' turnaround has to go to head coach Kyle Shanahan, who was heavily criticized by fans not too long ago.

"Yeah, you lose four games in a row, I'm the head coach of this team, I expect [the criticism], and I deserve it," Shanahan said on October 24 after an embarrassing loss to the Indianapolis Colts.

The 49ers' season looks brighter now. Longtime scribe, Peter King, named Shanahan his Coach of the Week in his latest Football Morning in America column for NBC Sports.

"The season was on the brink three weeks ago this morning," wrote King. "The Niners had just lost to Arizona to fall to 0-4 at home and 3-5 overall, and the big, bad Rams were due in Santa Clara the following Monday. Shanahan was 34-41 as a head coach, and he seemed headed to his fourth losing season out of five.

"In the three games since, the Niners have been one of football's most efficient teams, turning it over once, scoring 31, 31, and 34 points, and running for 536 yards in those three wins. Shanahan has managed Jimmy Garoppolo superbly, and the embattled quarterback is playing his best since midway through 2019."

Next up for San Francisco are the 3-7 Seattle Seahawks, who always play the 49ers tough and have won the last three contests between the two teams and four of the previous five. After that, it will be the Cincinnati Bengals, Atlanta Falcons, Tennessee Titans, Houston Texans, and Rams to close out the season.

"Strong run game with the Niners' last pick in the 2021 draft, Elijah Mitchell, forced into action and playing great (693 yards, 4.8 per rush), under the tutelage of 72-year-old running backs coach Bobby Turner," King added. "And Jimmy Garoppolo, the undisputed starter, has turned it over once in the last three games—not coincidentally, all wins."

The 49ers didn't escape the Vikings game unscathed. Wide receiver Deebo Samuel, who has looked more like a running back in recent weeks, is undergoing an MRI for a groin injury. Linebacker Fred Warner is also being examined after exiting the game with a hamstring injury.

"The Niners cannot afford Deebo Samuel's groin injury to be serious," King noted. "He's turned into a first-class phenom, averaging 18.0 yards per catch and 8.1 yards per rush. Road games at the Bengals, Titans and Rams will test them, but I see the Niners as a threatening sixth seed in a weakened NFC."



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