Mike Shanahan reportedly drawing interest from Bears, 49ers
Could the Super Bowl-winning coach be headed for a reunion with Jay Cutler in Chicago?
Shanahan, who has been out of the league since being fired by Washington after the 2013 season, expressed interest in returning to NFL sidelines by hinting at a return in an appearance on ESPN’s Sunday NFL Countdown last week.
“Only one thing I want to do is win,” he told Chris Berman. “It’s not just coaching but going to the right organization that will make a strong commitment ’cause there’s only one team that’s happy at the end of the year and that’s the team that wins the Super Bowl.”
The 62-year-old, who won a pair of Super Bowls as the head man for the Broncos from 1995 to 2008, spent three seasons in Denver coaching current Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, who heaped praise on his former coach after Chicago’s season-ending loss to the Vikings on Sunday.
“He’s a heck of a coach,” said Cutler, whose turnover issues have some calling for his ouster in Chicago. “He deserves to be a coach somewhere. He is out of the game so I am sure he is looking to coach somewhere.
“My three years with him were very, very enjoyable. He does a great job of leading teams, on and off the field, and offensively he knows how to get it done.”
There could be hope in Chicago that a reunion with Shanahan could help rejuvenate the quarterback they signed to a seven-year deal worth $54 million guaranteed in January, a decision the Bears are rumored to regret. Cutler struggled under Marc Trestman — who was relieved of his duties on Monday morning — leading the league in turnovers in 2014.
The 49ers are also in the market after a mutual departure sent Jim Harbaugh bounding for the University of Michigan. Rumor has it that 49ers greats Joe Montana and Steve Young have pushed for Shanahan, who could walk into a situation in San Francisco loaded with talent — though saddled with expiring contracts and cap concerns. Interestingly enough, Shanahan’s son and former offensive coordinator in Washington, Kyle, has also been linked to the Niners job.