49ers key matchup No. 1: Crabtree vs. Peterson


49ers key matchup No. 1: Crabtree vs. Peterson

This is the final part in a series that spotlights three 49ers-Cardinals matchups to watch Monday, 5:30 p.m. (ESPNCBS, Ch. 5), at University of Phoenix Stadium49ers WR Michael Crabtree vs. Cardinals CB Patrick PetersonTale of the tape
Crabtree (15): 6-foot-1, 214 pounds, fourth season, Texas Tech
Peterson (21): 6-foot-1, 219 pounds, second season, LSUIn the 49ers' past two games, tight end Vernon Davis has been a non-factor in the passing game with a combined three receptions for 37 yards against the New York Giants and Seattle Seahawks.As much as the 49ers would like to get the ball to Davis, 49ers offensive coordinator Greg Roman is not going to force the issue.Matchup No. 2: Brown vs. Fitzgerald
"I think when we're our best, the ball's being distributed evenly," Roman said. "There are times, though, that we will design very specific plays for Vernon and they are kind of, 'It's Vernon or it might be read No. 2,' but that's it."But I don't think you want to make a living on that. I don't think anybody does. When people try to take away something to go to extreme measures, I think you want to go do something else."Therefore, the biggest disappointment in the passing game when the Giants and Seahawks were focused on Davis is that quarterback Alex Smith did not take advantage of the opportunities to get the ball to Michael Crabtree.Crabtree was frustrated with the limited number of opportunities that came his way from Smith. He had just three catches for 26 yards against the Giants and four receptions for 31 yards against the Seahawks.Crabtree leads the 49ers with 34 catches for 368 yards and one touchdown.
Matchup No. 3: Iupati vs. CampbellThe Cardinals will likely use linebackers and safeties to blanket cover Davis. Wide receiver Mario Manningham is expected to be back on the field Monday night after missing one game with a shoulder injury.So that means there should be some chances for Crabtree, who will be matched in single coverage most of Monday night against second-year cornerback Patrick Peterson.In two meetings last season, Crabtree had success getting deep on double moves against Peterson. Crabtree had seven catches for 120 yards in the 49ers' 23-7 victory at Candlestick Park. Three weeks later, Crabtree had seven receptions for 63 yards in the 49ers' 21-19 loss."I had the opportunity to guard Crabtree last year and that prepared me for a long season," Peterson said in a conference call with Bay Area reports. "It'll be a fun matchup again. It's always fun to match up against the guys the media says are the big dogs."Peterson, who also presents a threat to the 49ers as a punt returner, has a team-leading three interceptions along with eight passes broken up in seven games. If he can handle Crabtree without much safety help, it might enable to the Cardinals to focus on neutralizing Davis."On the back end, we have to be disciplined and ready for play-action pass," Peterson said. "They want to run, run, run and thrown it over our heads for touchdowns. We have to be extremely discipline as a defense."

Former 49ers head coach Tomsula named Washington's D-line coach

Former 49ers head coach Tomsula named Washington's D-line coach

ASHBURN, Va. — Washington turned to internal candidates to fill two critical vacancies, promoting Matt Cavanaugh to offensive coordinator and Greg Manusky to defensive coordinator.

Cavanaugh was the team's quarterbacks coach and Manusky its outside linebackers coach last season. Washington announced the promotions Monday along with the hires of Kevin O'Connell as quarterbacks coach and Jim Tomsula as defensive line coach.

It has been an offseason of upheaval for the coaching staff after Washington fired defensive coordinator Joe Barry and a few assistants and offensive coordinator Sean McVay left to become head coach of the Los Angeles Rams.

In its efforts to replace Barry after ranking 28th defensively in consecutive seasons, Washington interviewed former Jacksonville Jaguars coach Gus Bradley, former Cleveland Browns coach Mike Pettine and former Buffalo Bills assistant Rob Ryan before opting for Manusky. The 50-year-old Manusky has been defensive coordinator for the Indianapolis Colts, San Diego Chargers and 49ers and worked with Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan in San Francisco.

Known for his fiery personality and booming voice on the practice fields, Manusky had only been on coach Jay Gruden's staff for one season as outside linebackers coach. Middle linebacker Will Compton tweeted: "Congrats to Coach Manusky!" when players were informed of his promotion.

Cavanaugh was Washington's quarterbacks coach for the past two years as Kirk Cousins twice set the franchise record for passing yards in a season. Cousins' status for 2017 remains in doubt after playing last season on the franchise tag, but with McVay gone he'll have a familiar face as his offensive coordinator.

After 13 NFL seasons as a backup quarterback, the 60-year-old Cavanaugh was offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears from 1997-98 and Baltimore Ravens from 1999-2004. O'Connell, Washington's new quarterbacks coach, was an assistant in San Francisco under Chip Kelly last season.

Tomsula, who replaces Robb Akey as defensive line coach, also most recently worked with the 49ers as their head coach in 2015.

Falcons coach Quinn: Kyle Shanahan 'totally nailed that' vs Packers

Falcons coach Quinn: Kyle Shanahan 'totally nailed that' vs Packers

The Atlanta Falcons have provided the 49ers with a window from Friday afternoon through Saturday to meet with offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, a source told CSNBayArea.com.

Falcons coach Dan Quinn has structured a normal work week to begin preparations to face the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 51, Quinn said at a press conference on Monday. The Falcons will have a day off on Saturday before the team travels to Houston on Sunday.

The 49ers are not allowed to officially hire Shanahan until after the Super Bowl on Feb. 5.

Shanahan is the presumptive 49ers coach -- the only candidate remaining among the six whom 49ers executives Jed York and Paraag Marathe interviewed. Shanahan's offense rolled up 493 total yards and converted 10 of 13 (77 percent) third-down opportunities en route to a 44-21 victory over the Green Bay Packers on Sunday in the NFC Championship game.

“I’m really proud of him,” said Quinn, who was hired by the Falcons two years ago after he served as Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator in Super Bowl 49.

“It’s not easy to do when there’s a lot of speculation and things going on outside your world to stay dialed in. I think it’s one that should be commended. Being on point and going for it, he totally nailed that.”

Shanahan is also expected to be heavily involved in the 49ers’ search for a general manager. The two remaining candidates among the nine who previously interviewed are Minnesota assistant general manager George Paton and Arizona vice president of player personnel Terry McDonough.

The 49ers have left open the possibility of adding more GM candidates to the list, according to a source.