Nostalgic fans recall epic Kyle Shanahan and Robert Saleh era after 49ers share throwback snap

San Francisco 49ers fans were hit with a wave of nostalgia recently after the team’s official Twitter handle shared a throwback photo of coaches including current head coach Kyle Shanahan, former assistant coaches- Robert Saleh, Mike McDaniel, and DeMeco Ryans.

During Shanahan and Saleh’s tenure with the 49ers, the team had a successful run, including a trip to Super Bowl LIV in 2020.

Fans were particularly fond of Kyle Shanahan’s offensive acumen and he incredibly showed good coaching performances throughout his first six seasons. Meanwhile, Robert Saleh’s aggressive and innovative defensive schemes were also highly praised, earning him the title of the NFL Assistant Coach of the Year by The Sporting News.

Kyle Shanahan

Saleh was the 49ers’ defensive coordinator from 2017-2020 before joining the New York Jets as a head coach. After going 4-13 in his first season with the Jets, the veteran coach led the team to a 7-10 record in 2022.

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DeMeco Ryans was a San Francisco defensive assistant from 2017-2020 and later became the 49ers’ defensive coordinator in 2021. Ryans became the sixth head coach of Houston Texas in 2023 after spending six years coaching with the 49ers.

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Mike McDaniel first served as the 49ers’ offensive coordinator, and later he worked as a run game coordinator for the team from 2017-2020. McDaniel joined the Miami Dolphins as the fourteenth head coach in 2022 and led the Dolphins to a 20-7 victory against the New England Patriots in his debut match.

Fans got nostalgic seeing the image of Kyle Shanahan alongside former coaches

The San Francisco 49ers’ official Twitter account shared the throwback photo on Tuesday where all the coaches were seen posing for a formal click.

The picture perfectly reflects how effective Kyle Shanahan’s guidance has been in the team’s success. Saleh, McDaniel, and Ryans were the team’s assistant coaches formerly, albeit these three later left the 49ers to become the league’s head coaches.

Fans had a reminiscence about the “epic” era of 49ers football under the leadership of Shanahan and Saleh. During their time with the team, Shanahan and Saleh were instrumental in leading the 49ers to the Super Bowl in the 2019 season, albeit they ultimately fell short to the Kansas City Chiefs.

A fan commented that the photo should be displayed in Santa Clara as it is a legacy.

The “badass” era of the team was recalled by a user who expressed this combination of too much badassery is beyond his control for him.

An admirer mentioned the incredible legacy of coach Shanahan.

A netizen gushed about the combination of these coaches as they all pulled and helped each other to be successful.

Another fan jokingly remarked that if someone is the 49ers’ defensive coordinator, he is guaranteed a head coaching job.

The throwback photo has brought back fond memories for many fans and has reignited their passion for the 49ers. As the team prepares for the upcoming season, fans are hopeful that the team can recapture some of that magic and make another run to the Super Bowl.

Who is your favorite coach among these four? Tell us in the comments.


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Maliha works as a content writer in Sportszion specializing in NFL and NBA. She has completed her graduation and post-graduation, majoring in MIS (Management Information Systems). She loves analyzing sports and keeping fans updated with the latest sport buzzes.


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