As we all know, both the San Francisco 49ers and the Oakland Raiders had less than ideal seasons this year. While the San Francisco squad finished with a mediocre 8-8 record, Oakland finished with an embarrassing 3-13. And in the National Football League, just one average season can ruin both a team’s reputation and a coach’s career.
The 49ers controversially let go of four-season head coach Jim Harbaugh this past January. In his first three seasons on the job, SF had an elite record of 36-11, one of the highest in the entire league. In those three years, the 49ers made it to the NFC Championships three times, and even earned a spot in Super Bowl XLVII in 2013, falling short to the Baltimore Ravens. Yet unfortunately, this season, Jim Harbaugh seemed to have overstayed his welcome in San Francisco; the 49ers owner, Jed York, let Harbaugh go after a disappointing 2014 season. York said this December that, “players hated [playing for Harbaugh] for being impossible to work with.” To fill Harbaugh’s position, there was much debate about whether the franchise should have hired outside or stayed inside. York’s final decision was to promote San Francisco’s 8-year defensive line coach, Jim Tomsula, to the position. His athletes have loved playing for him since 2007, and can’t wait for him to continue his career in San Francisco. York believes he will catapult the team straight to success in the 2015 NFL season.
Head 49ers coach Jim Tomsula. Source: www.49ers.com
The Oakland Raiders have a different story. Although they may have an impressive history (especially with three Super Bowl titles in the late 1970s and early 1980s alone), more recently, the Oakland squad has not looked so promising. Oakland ended this season with an unacceptable 3-13, the third lowest record in the NFL. Similarly, Oakland has not posted a winning record since 2002, over a decade ago. San Francisco may have released Harbaugh at the end of the season, but Oakland’s Dennis Allen was let go mid-season. Looking into 2015, the Raider franchise hired the Denver Broncos’ previous defensive coordinator, Jack Del Rio. At a recent press conference, Oakland’s owner, Mark Davis, said, “I have no doubt that [Del Rio] will make a significant impact and help reach the goal of everyone in this building, which is to reach championships.”
New Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio. Source: www.jobsnhire.com
Both the 49ers and Raiders have high hopes looking onward into the 2015 season, but only time will tell whether the franchises have what it takes to go the distance in the race for Super Bowl 50.