When the San Francisco 49ers hired Jim Harbaugh, they had it easy. The team immediately saw success and didn’t have to entertain the idea of wondering whether or not the hire was a good one. It was a great hire. The 49ers were contenders for the Super Bowl in the first three seasons of Harbaugh’s tenure. Then in the fourth season, due to some power struggle and undermining, the team faltered to an 8-8 record and Harbaugh was gone.
Rather than thoughtfully seek a new head coach, the 49ers under CEO Jed York took the easy way out and hired Jim Tomsula and revamped the coaching staff to this collection of misfit ideas. It was a poor hire and one year later, the 49ers let Tomsula go. He couldn’t wait to get rid of Harbaugh instead of resolving the issue. He quickly then dismissed Tomsula (with news surfacing before season ended).
So the 49ers knew they had to get it right. They can’t afford to screw up once again. After interviewing the likes of Hue Jackson, Tom Coughlin and Mike Shanahan, the team settled for Chip Kelly.
Jed York said everything he was supposed to say as he addressed the San Francisco 49ers’ ugly 2015 season. He said that Jim Tomsula was a great guy but the team had to go another direction. He admitted that he missed on trying to make this season competitive for the 49ers. He didn’t even really address Jim Harbaugh. He says he gets too emotional on Twitter. He said a lot of things on Monday. None of it really matters.
What York has put the team through in the past two seasons warrants more than just a press conference with “all the right words” to make everything better. But there was nothing he could do Monday to truly salvage the ugliness the team has endured.
The press conference was a given. The speech and message to fans was a nice touch. But that’s not what the team needs at this time. York knows he messed up. His conference on Monday was only for him to admit that fact. And that is only the first step in a long process of righting the wrongs.
The 49ers signed Jerome Simpson. Yes, that guy who has gotten in trouble for marijuana in the past and has been arrested three times. That doesn’t seem to mesh well with York’s proclamation that the team has to “win with class” when you’re bringing in players that don’t really embody that.
So, when asked about it, he gave a very poor answer.
“You have to ask [G.M.] Trent Baalke,” York told Ann Killion of the San Francisco Chronicle. “I don’t know what the thinking was.”
He doesn’t know why a certain player with a troubled past was signed. And the ignorance of not knowing doesn’t really keep him accountable to the standard he claims to have set for the team. This is not a good sign. So is York all talk but really not in the loop of what’s going on within his own franchise?