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Resolved: You think Holmgren, 49ers best fit

11/25/2008

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

We ran this chart as context for the Hot Topic question that ran Friday: What will the future bring for Mike Holmgren once he steps down as Seahawks coach following the season?

The Seahawks are 2-9. They would have to win three of their final five games for Holmgren to avoid displacing Weeb Ewbank on the list of Super Bowl-winning coaches with the lowest winning percentages in their final NFL seasons.

Unless, of course, Holmgren returns to coaching in 2009 or beyond. This is a discussion worth having because Holmgren will certainly have options as a coach, executive or both. I've gone through your comments and weaved in my own thoughts below.

49ers r golden: I still think the 49ers should offer Holmgren a GM spot...i think that would work well for both the niners and Holmgren...what do you think Sando?

Mike Sando: That would work well, in my view, as long as Holmgren had the right people around him in the scouting department. He has worked with current general manager Scot McCloughan, so that might provide one option. Holmgren would lend credibility to the 49ers, at least in the short term. The 49ers would need him to find the next great 49ers quarterback.

rdo333: by your criteria i dont know what it will bring. but i know what it won't -- replacing wade phillips. jerry likes to keep his fingers in every slice of the pie.

Mike Sando: You are probably right even though Holmgren and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones have a very good relationship.

windknot02: Holmgren's record as HC and only HC-- really good. Holmgren's record as GM-- pretty underwhelming. but you get the sense that Holmgren's precondition would be to control personnel

Mike Sando: Absolutely. He's not going to go somewhere and let someone else build the roster.

top10pick: I would love to see holmgren take over in the [Seattle] front office. what can [current GM Tim] ruskell possibly know about the NFL better than holmgren? contracts maybe? to solve that, just put a bunch of advisors around holmgren. Nobody in the entire organization understands the game as well as holmgren. Holmgren would set an example as a leader in the organization. what does ruskell represent?

Mike Sando: College scouting is Ruskell's strength. For all Holmgren's knowledge, Ruskell knows a lot more about college scouting. That is his forte. I would also say that Ruskell probably knows defensive talent better than Holmgren. Contracts would not be a strength of either man. Of course, ownership isn't going to install Holmgren as the GM at this point.

Xander2353: Here is something that maybe in the realm of probability but not the realm of possibility. The 49ers Give Singletary a 2 year coaching contract (not sure if this has ever been done) and after Holmgren's sabbatical have the 49ers offer him the "Bill Parcells Role" and he cleans house and gets the 49ers back to winning consistently. A little far-fetched I know, but something (or something similar) I hope happens.

Or something a little less far from the realm of probability... the 49ers management has Holmgren 'consult' on the coaching search *(so that his coach is in place) and offer a spot in the front office when he returns from his wife-imposed sabbatical.

Mike Sando: I like your thinking. If the 49ers wanted Holmgren but knew they could not get him in 2009, then setting it up along those lines would make sense.

fjbj79: Mike Holmgren will ta
ke a year off then become the head coach of the Huskies. Jim Mora Jr will be celebrating his first NFC championship and the Sonics will be back. It is going to be a crazy year in Seattle Sports in 2010.

Mike Sando: Nicely done, but you forgot the part about Mike Price coming back to coach Washington State.

SnakePlizzken: HAHAAHAHAHAH @ fjbj79. Seattle is literally depleted at offense and defense, the team we once saw making a Super Bowl run in 2006 is no more. -Harsh rebuild on the way (Hassleback is going through the bodily motions), but can you expect Mora Jr to make the right choices? -I even hate to admit it, but the Cardinals might be in that "changing of the guard" spot for the next 3 years.

Holmgren will take a year off as planned (he's burnt out anyways) and he'll return to the 49ers as active club president. It's obviously relevant due to the fact that the 49ers don't have one, or within any instance a club President/proxy nobody knows much about behind the scenes.

It all points to San Fran, Holmgren just has too many ties there (including his old GM with the Packers/Hawks Scotty Mac who is currently the GM of the 49ers).

Mike Sando: I can't fault your logic. The one thing I wonder about is whether Holmgren would work for the organization give its current state (stadium issues, 27-year-old owner, no known quarterback, etc.).

 _Mr_Zero: Holmgren is going to be with the 49ers starting next season! He probably won't be coaching but he will be working for the 49ers.

Mike Sando: We'll save the link to this item and give you all the credit if and when it happens.

Bill_324: Week in and week out, Seattle performs this Kabuki dance on the field that is almost painful to watch anymore. Injuries have decimated the offensive side of the ball, and a lack of passion has rendered the defense impotent. What does this have to do with Holmgren?

I think this puts a bad taste in his mouth for coaching. He realizes that he is getting a bit long in the tooth, and might be better served doing something else with his time. However, I don't see him returning in that Bill Parcells capacity either. I remember a few years back when he had GM duties, he was practically run out of town. Listening to KJR almost seemed like listening to a mob armed with pitchforks and torches to go burn down Qwest field. I don't know if he was overburdened with responsibilities (which would obviously make him more apt to take another GM position), but he needs this year off at the least.

Also, i'm not sold on the idea of him being a broadcaster. He doesn't appear to have one of those media friendly personalities. From the press conferences and media bytes I've heard, he sounds a lot like a math teacher I had in High School (no offense Mr. Holmgren). Speaking of broadcasting though, I wonder why Jim Mora Sr. never got into the profession. That clip with him talking about the playoffs gets me rolling every time.

Mike Sando: Holmgren probably needed a math teacher to help him count the money he's made as the NFL's highest-paid coach. Seriously, though, his background is in teaching. I think he would be good on TV as long as he cut loose a little bit. But I think he would have to work at it. Bill Cowher seems to be enjoying the change of pace. Part of me wonders if Holmgren might enjoy his time away too much to subject himself to another season such as this one.