Former UT WR Kyle Shanahan Named 49ers Head Coach After Super Bowl
Former Texas Longhorns WR Kyle Shanahan is officially the new head coach of the San Francisco 49ers.
Unfortunately for Kyle Shanahan, no one really wants to talk about the new 49ers gig. People are still talking about whether the Atlanta Falcons blew Super Bowl 51 because of his play-calling.
As the Offensive Coordinator of the Falcons, Shanahan led the NFC Champions to an amazing offensive season. That momentum carried over to the Super Bowl, where the Falcons built a 25-point lead against the New England Patriots.
However, the Patriots made a comeback for the ages to win the Super Bowl in overtime. Shanahan’s fourth quarter play-calling was immediately second-guessed as it happened and then after the game.
The thing is Shanahan’s job status never seemed to be a distraction during the Falcons’ Playoffs run. Rumors of Shanahan going to the 49ers started early in the Playoffs, but the Falcons just kept winning. And not just winning, but decimating the defenses of Seattle and Green Bay.
It appeared the same was going to be true in the Super Bowl. But, Shanahan confided in folks after the game that he “blew it” in the fourth quarter.
Unfortunately, Shanahan never got a chance to redeem himself in overtime. The Patriots won the coin toss, Tom Brady marched the AFC Champions down the field for a TD, and the rest is history. Atlanta never saw the ball in the extra period.
Now, Shanahan moves on to a major rebuilding job with the 49ers. He would have been riding a huge wave of momentum if the Falcons sealed the game in the fourth quarter and won the Super Bowl.
Instead, Shanahan will be dogged by questions about his Super Bowl play-calling instead of how he plans to rebuild San Francisco.
Kyle Shanahan Thankful For Time In Austin
For Longhorns fans, Kyle Shanahan still has ties to his Texas roots. Shanahan played a limited amount during his time in Austin, but he still has fond memories of playing for head coach Mack Brown.
Shanahan returned to the state of Texas to coach the Super Bowl in Houston, where he was asked about his time with the Longhorns. His memories are very good.
“I wanted to go to a big-time school totally focused on football,” Shanahan told reporters at the Super Bowl 51 Media Day at the start of Super Bowl Week.
“I had never been in the state of Texas at the time, but I had a relationship with Mack from him recruiting me when he was at (North) Carolina. So, when he said yes, I packed my car up and drove from Durham to Austin. It took me a couple of days… When I got there, I realized there was nothing to be nervous about. Austin was a great city and as fun as could be. Some of my favorite times of my life.”
Now, Shanahan hopes to create new memories in San Francisco as the new 49ers head coach. He’ll just have to get past the “what if?” questions from reporters, his new players, and even himself after what happened to the Falcons in the Super Bowl.
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