49ers Football Leadership Shows the “Other Half” How To Operate (OPINION)

49ers Football Leadership Shows the “Other Half” How To Operate

By Robert Haugh

The 49ers first draft with a new regime was a nice surprise. Coach Kyle Shanahan and GM John Lynch pulled off some masterful trades to get two top quality defensive players and add draft picks. Thank you, Chicago Bears.

Sport reporters are applauding their savvy moves. Even Mercury News sports columnist Tim Kawakami, a frequent critic of the team, wrote a nice column about the draft moves. (LINK).

We also applaud Shanahan and Lynch for their moves yesterday. At the very least, they’ve given the fans some hope after many dismal years of bad football decisions. It’s like wrestling fans getting excited to see A.J. Styles debut.

So, we’re wondering what if the 49ers could re-shape the part of the front office that’s in charge of city hall relations and community relations?

Their record in Santa Clara since the stadium was built is even worse than their on the field performance.  Here are the “lowlights” that was highlighted in a February column:

  • They tried to take the Youth Soccer Park from soccer kids and failed, leaving them with nothing and creating lots of bad feelings in the community.
  • They tried to lower their own rent. Seriously.
  • They won’t turn over documents for a City audit which makes people think that they are hiding something big.
  • They have their fingerprints all over BluPAC, a dark money organization that tried to take over the City Council and they won’t just deny that they’ve funded them.
  • They brought in dozens of employees by bus to city hall to attack Mayor Lisa Gillmor whose popularity in Santa Clara is sky high.
  • Then, to top it off, they sued the city, their landlords. Go figure.

Most people around town believe that Jed York makes all these bad decisions. That’s probably true. It’s his team after all, so it’s his right. But he’s clearly getting lousy advice. It’s like he’s listening to Trent Baalke and Jim Tomsula about what to do in Santa Clara. That’s scary.


So who are the Baalke and Tomsula of the non-football side of the 49ers front office?

According to the team website, it’s these people who are at the top of the non-football org chart:

  • Al Guido, President
  • Hannah Gordon, General Counsel
  • Brano Perkovich, Chief Investment Officer
  • Scott Sabatino, Chief Financial Officer
  • Patty Inglis, Executive Vice President

As Jed York, said earlier this year after firing Chip Kelly, “You don’t dismiss owners.”

If Jed can’t dismiss himself, he has to fire some or all of the five people listed above to turn around the team in the Santa Clara community.  If he doesn’t want to fire anyone, maybe we could trade them all to the Chicago Bears and let Shanahan and Lynch draft new people.



  1. […] It’s good to see the Chronicle weigh in on this issue as they are highly respected. Maybe greater scrutiny will lead Jed York to figure out that he has to make some real changes on the non-football side of his front office. They’ve really blown it with the Santa Clara community that once trusted them and voted overwhelmingly in support for their stadium. That’s not news. That’s something, we’ve said before. […]

  2. Please add BLOCKING the public’s access to the San Tomas Aquino Creek Trail, as another example of an ongoing problem with the City and citizens of Santa Clara and the 49ers.

    The 49ers MUST return unencumbered access to OUR public resource. They sold us,that they wanted to build the stadium there because it would provide wonderful access and then they block it off and shut it down. This must finally be corrected and the situation be brought into EIR and CEQA compliance.

    Join “Friends of San Tomas Aquino Creek Trail” on Facebook to keep the heat on and hold their feet to the fire and get OUR trail and regionally significant bike path back.

  3. Maybe in a future column you could tell us more about these five clowns. They’re not just screwing up a great franchise, they’re screwing up our city.

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