Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Round Table: When will Trent Baalke be fired?

Oct 21, 2016 at 7:50 AM3

Everyone believes that San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke is on the hot seat. In our latest Round Table, our staff was asked when they believe Baalke might get fired. The 49ers are off to a 1-5 start and riding their first five-game losing streak since starting the 2010 season 0-5.

Zain Naqvi

The organization seems aware that a change needs to be made. To me, the fact that the team didn't spend heavily in the free agent market leads me to believe that Baalke didn't have free reign and was told to hold his cards - possibly so that the next GM would have the luxury of a lot of cap space.

Tom Gamble was brought in during the 2015 offseason and was given the title of Assistant GM in July. This is interesting for a franchise that has historically promoted from within for its front office positions. Gamble worked with the Niners during the Harbaugh era (and before with GM Scot McCloughan) before he left to join the Eagles, which was seen as a major loss at the time. I fully expect that Tom Gamble will be the next GM of the 49ers.

When should the change happen? Well, it's going to happen no matter what, but I'd want to give Gamble the rest of this season to set up his scouting system, to set the draft board for this upcoming draft and to give him time to evaluate the current roster. For those reasons, I think the change must be done at the bye week to give Gamble the rest of the season to get settled in. Baalke has written his ticket out of town with his continued failures in the draft and reluctance to build depth through free agency.

Al Sacco

Despite the recent report that Baalke's job is safe, I firmly believe it's a foregone conclusion that he'll be fired at the end of the season. The 49ers roster is a disaster, and the team has gotten worse each of the last three years. Baalke's philosophy on how to build a football team is outdated, and the fact that he devalues skill positions consistently puts the Niners behind the eight ball. It's obvious Chip Kelly knows he doesn't have the players or depth right now, and he's clearly frustrated. If he wants to be, Kelly will be in San Francisco for the long haul, and to think he won't have a strong influence on the roster is naive. Whether it's Tom Gamble or someone else, the 49ers will have a new GM in 2017.

John Croston

There have been certain members of the media that have called for his head following the Buccaneers game and as the 49ers head into the bye week. I can't really fathom what purpose that would serve, other than to appease the fan base. It would probability mean the interim promotion of Tom Gamble who I'd be willing to bet is on the York's radar for the long term gig.

I'd like to say that it will happen immediately following the last game of the season. I just have a feeling that Baalke will be able to weasel his way into one more season with Coach Kelly. It will be up to Jed York whether or not he is willing to tolerate another offseason of Baalke drafting 'value' players, rather than drafting players that actually fit the system and can have an immediate impact.

I didn't think York had the stomach to fire Jim Tomsula after one season, but he did, so I'm hoping that he will show some more intestinal fortitude and fire Baalke at season's end. Time will tell...

Jesse Dumas

Next week? Next year? Never? Who the hell can tell what Jed York is thinking and/or going to do with this team anymore? If he'd shown any sort of logic or deliberate approach to the way he makes decisions then it would be worth trying to predict his next move, but he's basically run the team by the seat of his pants and surrounded himself with yes-men that tell him whatever he wants to hear. Subsequently, this organization is flailing and rudderless, just like it was back in 2010.

IF Baalke gets fired, and that's a big "if", I can't see it happening until the end of the season. Getting a new guy now isn't going to immediately change anything personnel-wise and if the Yorks want to entice somebody who's actually good to come and do the job, they have to put out a front of stability. Otherwise, nobody will want to go work there without a 100% guarantee they'll be paid handsomely and left alone to run the ship.

Canning Baalke now may appease some of the fans, but not for long and it's meaningless unless York gets the right guy to do the job next.

David Bonilla

This is a tougher question to answer than you may believe. Logically, you can determine by now that Baalke's way of doing things has eroded the 49ers roster to the point they are at now. Some will point out that Baalke created a Super Bowl roster and numerous NFC Championship appearing teams. I believe that credit for those teams should go to the previous regime, to which Baalke was a part of. He just wasn't the man calling the shots back then. He rode that roster to a Super Bowl and then failed to reload it once the talent started to slip away.

Baalke has hit on a few draft picks, but his misses are glaring. His entire 2012 draft class is nowhere to be seen and he refuses to spend in free agency, even on positions of desperate need.

With all of that said, it would be nice to get a new general manager in place right away so that he can begin influencing scouting. Something tells me that is not going to happen because this team has a bizarre way of doing things. Then there is Tom Gamble, who is the logical replacement, but seems to be Chip Kelly's buddy. That relationship makes me somewhat hesitant to endorse that promotion because Gamble as general manager might give Kelly a little more say on the roster than he should have.

Then there is the curious report that Baalke's job is safe. If that is true, which I don't believe it is, then at some point Baalke convinced Jed York to just let this season play out and give the Baalke-Kelly partnership a shot through 2017. Something like, "Look, we're going to be bad this year. We won't let on that we know this, but it's going to be really bad. Then we'll have an even higher draft pick, get our quarterback of the future and have a ton of cash to build around him."

Ok, that's the conspiracy theory portion of my brain thinking. I still believe that the plan was always to give Baalke until the end of the season to allow the 49ers to at least show some impovement. That hasn't happened and I think Baalke will be let go at the end of the season.


  • When will Trent Baalke be fired?
  • Following the season
  • The bye week
  • He won't be fired
  • After next season
  • 664 votes
The views within this article are those of the writer and, while just as important, are not necessarily those of the site as a whole.


  • Jo
    Just a swift comment from Italy: It's terrible to see how the team makes me love football is playing this season. If the roster is not up to the expectations of this great franchise, well guess who ARE the bunglers??!!
    Oct 28, 2016 at 8:46 AM
  • Todd
    Baalke should Have been fired year ago when A.j Jenkins was let go. A first round pick being let go after one season is unheard of.
    Oct 23, 2016 at 5:30 PM
  • Dan Waterman
    In my opinion when the team is 1-5 and the roster still looks in a mess, roster usually is a responsibility of GM. Like many on this discussion board have highlighted that Baalke had more misses than hits in draft picks, including 2012 draft and A.J. Jenkins adventure. Any sensible owner would have fired him a year ago but he seems like hanging on to his job. I think he will be fired after the bye week.
    Oct 21, 2016 at 9:20 AM

Facebook Comments

More San Francisco 49ers News

Round Table: When will Trey Lance get his first start for the 49ers?

By Site Staff
Jul 23, 2021

Jimmy Garoppolo is expected to be the starting quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers when the team opens the regular season on September 12 against the Detroit Lions. How long he remains the starter is the question. San Francisco traded up to draft Garoppolo's eventual successor, Trey Lance, at No. 3 overall. He will bring a much different dynamic to head coach Kyle Shanahan's offense. The inexperienced quarterback just needs time to learn and master the playbook and scheme. We asked our 49ers Webzone contributors to predict when Lance will get his first start. Below are the responses in the order in which they were received. Chaz Inouye The 49ers should get off to a strong start with what looks to be an easy schedule to begin the season with

Jimmy Garoppolo's ankle was 'an inch away from just snapping' last season, says 49ers' Trent Williams

By David Bonilla
Jul 27, 2021

Jimmy Garoppolo struggled to stay on the field last season, missing 10 total games as the San Francisco 49ers struggled to six wins. Trent Williams was among several players to speak to reporters today as the team reported to training camp. The offensive lineman revealed that Garoppolo's situation could have ended up being much worse. "A lot of people didn't know his ankle was damn near less than an inch away from just snapping," Williams told reporters. "Just watching him even fight through and try to play — a guy who has accomplished so much, got a lot of money, went to a Super Bowl — he didn't have to press forward like he tried to and tried to play hurt. The guys respect that." Garoppolo suffered his first injury — initially reported as a

Trent Williams on board with 49ers adding QB Trey Lance, doesn't think there will be a QB controversy

By Kirk Larrabee
Jul 27, 2021

49ers offensive tackle Trent Williams has been around the NFL for over a decade, which means he fully understands just how harsh of a business the league can be. For that reason, Williams has no problem with the 49ers' decision to add rookie quarterback Trey Lance even though they already have a proven veteran in Jimmy Garoppolo, and he doesn't seem to think there will be any controversy as a result. Garoppolo led the 49ers to the Super Bowl in 2019 and carries a 22-8 overall record since joining the team in 2017. But he's also missed the bulk of two seasons due to injuries, has a contract with a hefty amount of non-guaranteed money over the next two seasons, and doesn't have the

Trent Williams confident 49ers are the 'team to beat' in 2021

By Rohan Chakravarthi
Jul 28, 2021

Trent Williams stepped up to the podium yesterday for his scheduled media session, which was the first time since March that he was available to the media. During the press conference, Williams expressed confidence in the San Francisco 49ers team around him, saying he believes that they are the "team to beat" this season. "I feel comfortable in the team we have," Williams said. "I feel like when [we got] all the guys on the roster on the field, I feel like we the team to beat. So, it's the first time in my career I walked into a situation with that type of confidence." Prior to last season, Williams had played nine years with Washington, never winning a playoff game. He missed the playoffs altogether last year as part of the injury-riddled 49ers that


More by Zain Naqvi

More Articles

Share 49ersWebzone