49ers agree to multi-year contract extensions with Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch →
placeholder image

Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports

49ers’ eyes on Steelers as they look to move past August chaos

Marc Adams
Aug 28, 2023 at 12:18 PM--

Videos are auto-populated by an affiliate. This site has no control over the videos that appear above.
And you thought last August was chaotic for the San Francisco 49ers?

Ah, the good old days, when life was easier, and the only craziness in Santa Clara centered around the stunning news that the 49ers had signed Jimmy Garoppolo to a one-year deal to be the backup quarterback. Some fans hated the idea, thinking it would be an unwanted distraction for the team. Others, like me, loved the idea, because it gave the 49ers a backup signal-caller that we knew could win a lot of games. It turned out to be a great move that helped the 49ers overcome a season-ending injury to brand-new starting QB, Trey Lance.

And now? There's not too much going on, except a crazy past week that topped off a chaotic August. The problem is that the chaos was brought on by those whose job it is to bring order, direction, confidence, and leadership to the franchise. Let's take a look at the chaos and possible missteps in August by those leading the 49ers.

Jed York's insider trading, securities violations

In early August, it was reported that Jed York had been sued for "alleged insider trading and violations of federal securities laws." York serves on the board of an online educational company called Chegg, Inc. The 49ers CEO, and other directors of the company, are being accused of concealing the company's role in helping college students cheat on online exams during the pandemic. York is also being accused of illegal insider trading for "allegedly unloading Chegg stock at the top of the market without informing investors about the extent of the cheating scandal." According to reports, York made $1.4M in profit on the sale of 20,000 shares at artificially inflated prices.

It's not likely something that will distract the team, but it's nevertheless a black eye for the organization if the allegations are proven to be true. And for those hoping York's legal troubles will force him to give up the team, much like his uncle, Eddie DeBartolo, had to do years ago, don't get too excited. York doesn't own the team. His parents do. So ownership of the San Francisco 49ers is unlikely to change.

York did speak on the lawsuit, saying, "It's 18 months old. It's a completely frivolous lawsuit. I think they're grasping at straws to bring this out publicly now.

"I'm proud of our work with Chegg, proud of my work on the board and with its scholarship program. I have no doubt this will be taken care of in no time. I wish I could say more but I will let the process play out."

Poor handling of the Trey Lance saga

However you slice it, Kyle Shanahan and John Lynch could have handled the Lance saga better than they did. Especially Shanahan. I didn't agree with the decision to bring Sam Darnold in to compete with Lance for QB2, but that's what they decided to do, so it's fine. But some are wondering if it truly was a competition. Or was it just made to look like one?

Many local reporters seemed to believe Lance was ahead in the competition. But national reporters kept saying it was the other way around. In the end, Shanahan made the decision to choose Darnold over Lance. Again, I disagreed with that, but it's his call.

But when the news broke that Darnold had been named QB2, there was also the added news that Lance was being shopped. And the news broke before the players found out, which is horrible, in my opinion. To make things worse, neither Shanahan nor Lynch met with the media after practice. Instead, Fred Warner and Javon Hargrave were left to answer questions. That's bad leadership.

Then on Friday, shortly before the 49ers final preseason game, it was announced that Lance had been traded to the Dallas Cowboys. To their credit, Lynch and Shanahan spoke on the matter. Lynch spoke during the broadcast and sounded like he might get choked up at one point. "Yeah, (it's) really a hard day," Lynch said during the game. "(Lance is) such a wonderful young man.

"We took a shot and it didn't work out. We own that. We take accountability for that."

Shanahan spoke after the game and among other things, said, "I always feel like I let Trey down."

Lynch and Shanahan mishandled the Lance situation, especially in August. But I respect that they were accountable for it.

Failure to get Nick Bosa extended sooner

The clock is ticking as each day gets us closer to the start of the NFL season. In fact, the 49ers are just over a week away from beginning installation of game plans for week one. And still no Nick Bosa.

Initially, I was certain this new deal, one that would likely make Bosa the highest-paid defensive player in history, would be wrapped up on the eve of training camp, or shortly thereafter. But that was five weeks ago. The 49ers have finished training camp, and preseason, and are now ready to begin the regular season.

On Friday, Ian Rapoport reported that Bosa could miss the opener because he's not currently negotiating with the 49ers. It seems that Bosa has decided what he wants his contract to look like, and he's not budging off of it. Lynch was asked on Friday if he believed a deal would get worked out before week one. Lynch said, "Yeah, I do. And we got a lot of work to do, and we'll continue to do that. He's a great player. We want them here. We need them here."

On Saturday, I talked about Bosa's contract situation on my show. I had a fan of the team jump in the comments and ask if Bosa might be waiting to see what Kansas Chiefs defensive tackle, Chris Jones, gets. It was an interesting question and not one I'd considered. But I really doubt it. For one thing, they play different positions (Jones plays on the defensive interior). For another, Jones isn't on Bosa's level.

On Monday, Rapoport went on the "Pat McAfee Show" and said, "They're not there yet, and I don't get the sense they're close at all, so I don't get the sense anything is imminent. But at least it sounds like there's been some level of conversation, I guess, which is as there should be. It's like there's been at least some touching base.

"They are not there yet. And I know this probably doesn't make anyone feel better, but there still is a lot of time. I mean, Bosa, I'm sure, keeps himself in unbelievable shape. I don't think he's going to need a lot of an acclimation period. So even if he shows up five days from now, I'm sure he'll be ready for the season."

Matt Barrows, appearing on 95.7 The Game Monday morning, spoke about the Bosa contract drama. Barrows said, "The agent is using Tuesday at 1 p.m., the deadline for getting down to the 53-man roster, as leverage. That's sort of a next data point or date that I'd be looking at for when this deal could get done."

It sounds like Bosa is tightening the screws on the 49ers. Either way, they should have figured this out by now. Even if it isn't the team's fault, they're the ones who will be blamed.

Looking to Pittsburgh

Now that the preseason has come to a close, the 49ers turn their attention to the Pittsburgh Steelers. San Francisco plays in the Steel City on September 10th at 10:00 a.m. (PST). Winning that game will not be easy, though. For one thing, the Steelers are always ready to play in week one, and almost always win on opening day, especially at home.

In the previous two seasons, the Steelers beat the Cincinnati Bengals and Buffalo Bills on the road. This year, they get to open at home.

The 49ers, on the other hand, sometimes tend to start a little more slowly. Add to that being on the road, playing an early game in the Eastern time zone, and a chaotic August, with a starting QB that didn't practice until training camp, and a right tackle who will be facing star edge rusher, T.J. Watt, and an opening day loss is a realistic possibility.

Yes, York, Lynch, and Shanahan made some mistakes that made August 2023 one they'd like to soon forget. But for all the missteps, this team has won a lot of games, and once again has a shot to win the Super Bowl.
The opinions within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.
Nobody's perfect. Did you find a mistake in this article?
Report it.


Facebook Comments

Do not use the comments to notify us of errors in the article. Editors may not see it. Instead, report errors here.

More San Francisco 49ers News

placeholder image

49ers vs. Giants: Kyle Shanahan hilariously explains chaos of a short NFL week

By David Bonilla
Sep 19

NFL teams do not like Thursday night games. More precisely, they don't like the short week of preparation for those games. It's a mess for players and coaches. The San Francisco 49ers will host the New York Giants at Levi's Stadium on Thursday, just four days after beating the Los Angeles Rams. Players had Monday off. On Tuesday, the 49ers will forego their normal full practice, replacing it with two lighter walkthroughs. Head coach Kyle Shanahan was asked about the problems a short week creates. He offered a pretty humorous but honest answer. "You feel extremely rushed," Shanahan told reporters during his Tuesday press conference. "I saw the players a few hours ago, and

placeholder image

Steelers end 49ers' historic streak that started last season

By Rohan Chakravarthi
Sep 19

The San Francisco 49ers have been one of the league's most physically imposing teams since head coach Kyle Shanahan arrived in 2017, which has only furthered in recent years with the team consistently building around their core to fit the culture. That has led to sustained success for the 49ers, and not so much for their opponents, at least in a certain way back in 2022. Are the 49ers the best team in the NFL after Rams win? Last year, the 49ers held an impressive streak; opponents went 0-15 in games the following week after facing the 49ers, which was a

placeholder image

Deebo Samuel trolls Patrick Peterson during 49ers-Steelers: "I thought he had all the tells"

By David Bonilla
Sep 13

Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback Patrick Peterson predicted an interception against San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy. "There is some tell signs out there that tells us what plays we're gonna get from those guys in certain situations," Peterson shared before the Week 1 contest. "When I get my pick Sunday, we'll talk about it." Things didn't turn out how he foretold. Not only did the Steelers defense fail to come away with a Purdy-thrown pass, Peterson was beaten for two touchdowns to wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk. On Tuesday, "Inside the NFL" shared some mic'd up footage from the 49ers-Steelers clash (h/t

placeholder image

Why 49ers starters remained in the game longer than expected vs. Steelers

By David Bonilla
Sep 13

Kyle Shanahan can't believe what happened. The San Francisco 49ers head coach still has emotional scars from the regular-season opener two years ago against the Detroit Lions. The Niners had built a 41-17 fourth-quarter lead and felt the win was in hand. Then, the Lions came storming back with two late scores. San Francisco ended up escaping with a 41-33 win, but Shanahan could have done without the added excitement in the final minutes of what had looked like a blowout. That game remains one of the reasons why the 49ers coach refuses to get too comfortable against an opponent, even with his team up big, as was the case on Sunday against the Pittsburgh


Trending News

Share 49ersWebzone