NFC Notes: 49ers, Kliff Kingsbury, Cardinals, Rams


  • The Athletic’s Matt Barrows notes he hasn’t spoken with 49ers owner Jed York about HC Kyle Shanahan for a while. But in the past, York has gushed about Shanahan, so Barrows thinks it would take something truly momentous to put the coach on the hot seat. 
  • Barrows mentions once 49ers OL Daniel Brunskill is healthy, they can start working OL Blake Hance more at tackle to assist their depth there. 


  • The Cardinals are 1-2 and it’s resulted in skepticism from around the league despite extensions for HC Kliff Kingsbury, GM Steve Keim and QB Kyler Murray this offseason. A high-ranking official for another NFC team told Jason La Canfora of the Washington Post: “We were shocked that they extended the coach. It’s not a sophisticated scheme. He’s not considered a great play-caller. Every year the production drops as the season goes on.”
  • Another scout said they’re overly reliant on Murray to make something happen: “Just look at the film of the Raiders game. The offense, when they need a play, is ‘wait for Murray to run around and make a big play.’ That’s how they win games.”
  • Still, there’s not a ton of heat on Kingsbury or Keim right now, as Arizona extended both despite the late-season collapse in 2021. A GM for another team said: “Never underestimate how close Keim is with that owner. It’s like he’s part of the family. Does wonders for your job security.”
  • Cardinals DC Vance Joseph isn’t “overly concerned” about DL J.J. Watt (calf) and pointed out that Watt was able to play in Week 3. (Howard Balzer)
  • Joseph also mentioned that he “absolutely” expects CB Trayvon Mullen Jr. (toe) to play in Sunday’s game. 


It’s fair to say Rams LB Bobby Wagner isn’t still in his physical peak at the age of 32, and there are moments on the field that show that. Mentally, Wagner is as sharp as ever, however, and teammates say he’s having a big impact for them defensively. 

“I don’t want to call him unstoppable, but he has an answer for everything. It’s kind of hard to put it in words, but that’s just it,” Rams LB Ernest Jones said via the Athletic’s Jourdan Rodrigue. “He is our cheat code. In the game, literally he’ll call stuff out — and if he says it, I’m doing it.”

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