The San Francisco 49ers’ coaching staff under Kyle Shanahan began taking shape Friday as the team announced the hiring of six new assistants.
Four join Shanahan on the offensive side: Jon Embree (assistant head coach/tight ends), Rich Scangarello (quarterbacks), Bobby Turner (running backs) and T.C. McCartney (offensive assistant). Shanahan, who was offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons before accepting his first head-coaching job on Monday, said Thursday he will handle play-calling duties next season and will not have an offensive coordinator.
The 49ers also hired Ray Wright as their head strength and conditioning coach, replacing Mark Uyeyama, and Nick Kray as administrative assistant to the head coach.
Embree spent the past three seasons coaching tight ends for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and previously held the same role in Cleveland (2013), Kansas City (2006-08) and Washington (2010), where he coached alongside then-assistant Shanahan. Wright also worked with Shanahan in Washington while the Redskins’ strength and conditioning coach from 2010-14.
Scangarello, the offensive coordinator last season at Wagner College, is a Roseville native who attended Sacramento State and coached at UC Davis. He spent 2015 as a quality-control coach with Atlanta, also under Shanahan.
McCartney was an offensive assistant for the 49ers in 2015 and before that worked in Cleveland as a quality-control coach under Shanahan in 2014. Kray will hold his first coaching job in the NFL after spending the last two seasons as the assistant director of football operations at North Carolina State.
Turner was running backs coach the past two seasons in Atlanta and had the same role in Washington (2011-14) and Denver (1995-2009), working under Kyle Shanahan’s father, Mike Shanahan, at both stops. Kyle Shanahan said Thursday that he’d “made a commitment to Bobby Turner a long time ago that if I got a head coach job I was going to take him with me, regardless where that was.”
Turner replaces longtime 49ers running backs coach Tom Rathman. Shanahan said he hopes Rathman, who had a stellar playing career as a 49ers fullback, will remain in the organization in another capacity.
“I love Tom Rathman,” Shanahan said Thursday. “He’s a hero of mine, and I know how good of a coach he is. I’m really trying hard to get him to be here in whatever role he wants. But I know Tom – Tom’s a running backs coach. And I’m going to try my hardest to keep him here. It’s definitely going to be up to him, but it’s going to take some convincing, I think.”
The role of defensive coordinator, an important one given Shanahan’s background on the offensive side, remains open. General manager John Lynch said Thursday the 49ers were “working toward” narrowing the list of candidates.