Just like everyone predicted, the 49ers hired 9-time Pro-Bowl Safety John Lynch as their general manager. While he has been an analyst with Fox NFL Broadcasts since he retired from the NFL in 2008, he spent 11 seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers where he went to Superbowl XXXVII, four seasons with the Denver Broncos, and one season with the New England Patriots.
He is currently a Hall-Of-Fame finalist, and is favored to make it in. While he clearly has lots of experience as a player, he has absolutely zero experience being a coach, NFL executive, or anything of the sort. The 49ers still decided to give him a six-year contract. It sounds like the 49ers are trying to copy what Denver did with John Elway when they named him general manager and Executive VP of football operations in 2011. Safe to say Elway has worked out for the Broncos, as he led the team to 5 straight playoff births, including two Superbowl trips and one victory.
While hiring an ex-player worked well for the Broncos, it didn't work well for the Lions when they hired Matt Millen in 2001. Millen was a Pro Bowl linebacker and a TV analyst, but was incredibly unsuccessful general manager.
It is reported that John Lynch reached out to Kyle Shanahan and expressed interest in becoming the GM of the team. Lynch has connections to Kyle, as his father, Mike Shanahan, liked Lynch as a player and signed him to the Broncos in 2004. Mike is also rumored to be offered an advisory role in the 49ers front office.
According to reports, John Lynch wanted to keep his candidacy hidden, which is why not a single person predicted that he would even be a candidate for the job.
While it will take time to see if the hire will pay off, the hiring of John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan as head coach at least gives the 49ers and their fans hope for the future after this last 2-14 season.