NFC Notes: 49ers, Cardinals, Seahawks


49ers OC Mike McDaniel said he’s not concerned with gaining play-calling duties given HC Kyle Shanahan is “one of the best” in the league. 

“One of the best aspects that the San Francisco 49ers have going is we have one of the best play callers to have done it,” McDaniel said, via Cam Inman of the Mercury News. “He’s done it for multiple teams for years, and it’s a real gift of his. So I don’t think that that does the 49ers good to try to work me in selfishly as the play caller.”

McDaniel said he and Shanahan are “very comfortable” with their relationship and the coach stays communicative with him. 

“We’re very comfortable in our working relationship and he relies on my opinion,” McDaniel said. “But he also makes it very clear his expectation is that my opinion is informed and that it adds value to him.”

McDaniel believes Shanahan doesn’t get enough credit for how collaborative he is with the members of his coaching staff. 

One of the things that I think Kyle isn’t totally known for and should be is, he is about as collaborative of a coach as you can possibly have,” McDaniel said. “He is not thinking of, ‘Hey, I want to do X, Y, or Z,’ without it being the best thing. And, so he hires people that he trusts and he values their opinion.”

  • The 49ers have hired former Giants’ Vice President of Communication Corry Rush to a “higher-level role” in San Francisco.  (Paul Schwartz)


Cardinals OLB Dennis Gardeck didn’t play much on defense in 2020 with just 93 snaps outside of special teams. He made the most of his limited opportunities, though, with seven sacks. It earned him a new deal as a restricted free agent and a chance for Gardeck to prove he’s not a one-hit wonder. 

“There is always that question when you’re going in practice, going against our starting offensive line and you’re like, ‘Man I’m ready to be out there (on defense) and doing those things, maybe it’s different on game day, maybe I’m wrong, maybe I’m overconfident,'” Gardeck said via Darren Urban of the team website. “You see it all the time with guys in the league – their ego is bigger than their play. I’ve never wanted to be that way. So it was, trust the timing, maybe you’re not ready for it yet. Part of it was cool to see all the hard work pay off, but also it was such a small snap count, such a limited number of reps. I am aware it’s a little skewed. I look forward to putting more out there.”

First, however, he’ll have to recover from a torn ACL that happened in December. He might not be ready for the start of training camp but Gardeck says he’s ahead of schedule and hoping to be back on the field for Week 1. 

“I wouldn’t put anything past Dennis,” Cardinals HC Kliff Kingsbury said. “He looks great and it sounds like he is ahead of schedule by all accounts, so we will see how he feels going into training camp. If he’s not ready for the start, I’d expect him to be ready soon thereafter.”


Seahawks HC Pete Carroll said second-year LB Darrell Taylor‘s return this offseason a “real highlight” after missing his entire rookie season due to a leg injury. 

“Darrell’s a real highlight too this time,” Carroll said, via ProFootballTalk. “He worked out with the rookies the whole time, which was great for him. He is probably, of the guys coming back, is the best-prepared guy on the football team right now because of all of the time he spent. He invested in it. He came with a great attitude, work ethic and all of that.”

Carroll had high praise of Taylor, describing that the second-year lineman is proving to have skills as an edge rusher and “burst off the ball.” 

“He’s an exciting football player,” Carroll said. “His edge-rush ability, his athleticism, he’s got a really good burst off the football. The ability to play in space, as well as rush the passer. You can maybe see why we were frustrated last year that we didn’t have him. But now we’ve really seen him. We hadn’t really seen them with much to go on and really he had one of really the brightest camps.”

  • John Boyle of the team website thinks there’s an opening for an undrafted rookie free agent or two to crack the roster at wide receiver and safety. 
  • Boyle writes the Seahawks have almost certainly had a discussion about signing OT Morgan Moses after he was released by Washington. However, he’s not sure if they’re one of the teams in the mix. 
  • He notes the Seahawks are higher internally on Brandon Shell and Cedric Ogbuehi at right tackle than the general public. 

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