San Francisco 49ers: 3 bold predictions for 2020 season

Nick Bosa #97 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Nick Bosa #97 of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images) /
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Kyle Shanahan, 49ers
Head coach Kyle Shanahan of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by John McCoy/Getty Images) /

No. 3: 49ers’ Kyle Shanahan Wins NFL Head Coach of the Year

This would be a tough one.

Some think Kyle Shanahan should have won the NFL’s Head Coach of the Year award in 2019 after taking what was previously a four-win Niners squad all the way to within 10 minutes of a Super Bowl victory the following season. Instead, the accolade went to Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, which was deserving enough an honor.

Usually, the award winds up going to a coach who turns his team around from a single-digit win total the previous season. In Shanahan’s case last year, the award would have made sense. And since the 49ers are predicted to be good again in 2020, it’ll be tougher for him to make the achievement.

Unless San Francisco dominates the league in its entirety this season.

But keeping Shanahan entirely out of coach-of-the-year talk isn’t productive. According to The Action Network, Shanahan currently has plus-1600 odds to receive the award, which is tied for third best with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ Bruce Arians (plus-1600) and behind the Dallas Cowboys’ Mike McCarthy (plus-1400) and the New England Patriots’ Bill Belichick (plus-1000).

Belichick’s Patriots could go through a massive regression after losing quarterback Tom Brady to the Buccaneers, which also explains Arians’ surge up the predictive rankings.

What could propel Shanahan into the top spot, though, would be the 49ers completely avoiding the worrisome Super Bowl “hangover” which plagues so many teams the year after losing the NFL’s ultimate game.

In this prediction, the Niners navigate that en route to a dominant season, earning Shanahan his deserved award.