San Francisco 49ers

49ers interested in Bicknell as OC, but Eagles blocking move

Bob Bicknell
Bob Bicknell

***UPDATE*** CSN Philly, citing two sources, reported that Bicknell has decided to remain in Philadelphia as that team’s wide receivers coach.

Jim Tomsula and the 49ers are interested in adding Eagles wide receivers coach Bob Bicknell to his staff, possibly as offensive coordinator, but the Eagles so far have prevented Bicknell from interviewing. The Bee first reported the team’s interest in Bicknell last week.

If the 49ers can extract Bicknell from Philadelphia, one possible way things come together on Tomsula’s staff is that Bicknell, 45, serves as the offensive coordinator, Steve Logan coaches the quarterbacks and Geep Chryst functions as an offensive specialist who concentrates on specific areas like red-zone plays or clock management.

Like Logan, Bicknell has experience in NFL Europe. He never coached on the same staff as Tomsula but served as an offensive coordinator for the franchise in Berlin and Cologne. In that way, he battled against the defensive lines and overall defenses that Tomsula ran at the time.

He’s mostly been a tight ends or a wide receivers coach in the NFL. He coached Buffalo’s wide receivers in 2012, meaning he is familiar with 49ers wideout Stevie Johnson, a presumed starter in 2015. Johnson had 79 catches for 1,046 yards for the Bills in 2012.

Bicknell has served under Eagles coach Chip Kelly for two seasons and is thus familiar with the aggressive, wide open system Kelly runs.

Three assistants on Tomsula’s offensive staff, Chryst, tight ends coach Tony Sparano and offensive line coach Chris Foerster, also have experience calling plays in the NFL.

Meanwhile, the NFL Network reports that the University of Florida is interested in Ronald Curry, an offensive assistant that the 49ers retained from Jim Harbaugh’s staff. Curry’s role with the 49ers has not been determined, but he likely would work with receivers, either as the main coach at the position or the assistant.

It’s possible that if Bicknell, who has experience with wide receivers, were to come on board, the 49ers would be more comfortable giving Curry his own position group. Curry played receiver for the Raiders from 2002-08.

Read Matt Barrows’ blogs and archives at www.sacbee.com/sf49ers.

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