49ers: Kyle Shanahan will win 2021 Coach of The Year if these 3 things happen

Head coach Kyle Shanahan of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Head coach Kyle Shanahan of the San Francisco 49ers (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /
2 of 4
Kyle Shanahan, San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan Mandatory Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports /

No. 3: Kyle Shanahan, 49ers finish with a top-5 offense

Kyle Shanahan is known for his innovative offense. And when it’s firing on all cylinders, it’s tough to stop. Just take a look at the Niners’ run during the 2020 playoffs when Shanahan effectively called nothing but run plays in the divisional bout against the Minnesota Vikings, then again in the NFC Championship game against the Green Bay Packers.

Neither the Vikings nor the Packers could stop San Francisco’s ground attack, and the whole “run it again” idea showcased why Shanahan’s offense could be so potent even without having to pass the ball much at all.

In 2019, the 49ers owned the NFL’s second-best scoring offense with 479 points scored, while gaining 6,097 total yards in the process (fourth best). Amid all the injuries in 2020, though, the Niners plummeted to the league’s 21st-ranked scoring offense with just 376 points scored.

Granted, not having key contributors like Jimmy Garoppolo, tight end George Kittle and running back Raheem Mostert for extensive parts of the year hurt matters a lot.

But the voters for the NFL Coach of the Year won’t care about that. They’ll be looking at production.

Fully functioning, San Francisco’s offense can be prolific and get into that range of scoring an average of 30 points per game, which was nearly the mark it reached back in 2019.

If Shanahan helps prompt this, he might have to do so by engineering the following move.