49ers beat writer says 'smart money' is on this defensive coordinator candidate

In an interview on a podcast, 49ers beat writer Matt Barrows said that the "smart money" is on this internal candidate to become the next defensive coordinator.

San Francisco 49ers v Minnesota Vikings
San Francisco 49ers v Minnesota Vikings / Michael Zagaris/GettyImages

The San Francisco 49ers are looking for a new defensive coordinator after Steve Wilks was fired after the Super Bowl.

Niners beat writer Matt Barrows said that the "smart money" is on internal candidate Nick Sorensen to win the job.

Matt Barrows: Nick Sorensen is the favorite to be 49ers' next defensive coordinator

Barrows made these comments on Tim Kawakami's podcast. Barrows spoke at length about the search for a defensive coordinator and how it has been confirmed that the 49ers have interviewed Sorensen as well as external candidate Brandon Staley.

The search may not be over because as of right now there is nothing to confirm whether the Niners have interviewed two external minority candidates for the position, as per the Rooney Rule. There are also other candidates currently in positions on teams like the New York Jets and the Houston Texans, who have been rumored as potential fits for the role.

The reason Barrows says that Sorensen seems to be the "smart money" candidate is because the 49ers do not seem like they want to rock the boat with this hire. General manager John Lynch has spoken about how he wants to maintain the core identity of what the team's defense is.

That would seem to suggest that the team would want someone who is familiar with the system. Someone like Sorensen who has been with San Francisco the last few seasons and has coached in different areas throughout the defense, holding the unique title of "defensive pass game coordinator & nickels coach," which may allow him to bridge some of the disconnect that there seemed to be between the secondary and the front seven last season.

Plus, the one external candidate that they have interviewed, Staley, operated a 3-4 defense, which is not the style of defense the 49ers play. Hiring Staley would seemingly be making the same mistake they made last season by hiring Wilks: a competent coach who has his own way of doing things and would likely struggle to adjust to how the 49ers play.

My thinking has been that an internal hire makes sense for the 49ers. So this comment from Barrows, who is obviously much more plugged into the team, seems to affirm that the 49ers want their next defensive coordinator to come from within and it may wind up being Sorensen.

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