Kyle Shanahan

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Kyle Shanahan
Photograph of Shanahan wearing a grey long-sleeved t-shirt and black shorts and standing on a football practice field holding a small sheaf of papers in his hands
Shanahan with the Atlanta Falcons in 2016
San Francisco 49ers
Position: Head coach
Personal information
Date of birth: (1979-12-14) December 14, 1979 (age 37)
Place of birth: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Career information
High school: Greenwood Village (CO) Cherry Creek
College: Texas
Career history
As coach:
Coaching stats at PFR

Kyle Michael Shanahan[1] (born December 14, 1979) is an American football coach who is currently the head coach and offensive coordinator for the San Francisco 49ers of the National Football League (NFL). In 2008, Shanahan, at 28 years old, became the youngest coordinator in the NFL when he was promoted by the Houston Texans.[2] Shanahan has also coached for the Washington Redskins, Cleveland Browns, and Atlanta Falcons. He was let go from the Atlanta Falcons after he made bad calls which led to the Falcons blowing a 28-3 lead in Super Bowl LI. His father, Mike, is the former head coach for the Los Angeles Raiders, Denver Broncos, and Redskins.

Earlier life[edit]

Shanahan was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, while his father coached at the University of Minnesota. He later attended Cherry Creek High School in Greenwood Village, Colorado, while his father served as head coach of the Denver Broncos. Shanahan accepted a scholarship offer by Carl Franks of Duke University, but chose to transfer as redshirt freshman to the University of Texas at Austin. Shanahan played wide receiver on a Longhorn team that featured future college coach Major Applewhite as well as future NFL players Roy Williams, Cedric Benson, Bo Scaife, Mike Williams, Quentin Jammer, and Chris Simms. Shanahan and Simms are close friends, and Simms has a tattoo of Shanahan's initials on his leg.[3]

Coaching career[edit]

Soon after he graduated from Texas in 2003, Shanahan became graduate assistant to Karl Dorrell at UCLA. Following that season, Shanahan was hired as assistant coach for offensive quality control under head coach Jon Gruden with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Gruden had held a similar position with the San Francisco 49ers in 1990, at about the same age that Shanahan had in 2004.

In 2006, Shanahan was hired by Gary Kubiak to serve as wide receivers coach for the Houston Texans. Kubiak had previously served as offensive coordinator under Mike Shanahan with the Broncos. At the time, Kyle Shanahan was the youngest position coach in the NFL. A season later, Shanahan received another promotion to become the Texans quarterback coach. In 2007, he had also been offered to become offensive coordinator at the University of Minnesota, where former Broncos assistant Tim Brewster just became head coach. Shanahan declined, citing his decision to be an NFL coach.[5] Shanahan was immediately dealt as the frontrunner for the vacant offensive coordinator position after Mike Sherman had left the Texans to take over as head coach at Texas A&M University.[6]

Offensive coordinator[edit]

On January 11, 2008, Shanahan was officially promoted, becoming the youngest coordinator in the NFL, being more than three years younger than Josh McDaniels of the New England Patriots. In 2010, Shanahan left the Texans to join his father, Mike Shanahan, with the Washington Redskins. The Redskins' performance during his tenure led some to question whether Shanahan's hiring was an example of unearned nepotism.[7] In 2012, Shanahan was fined $25,000 for insulting the replacement officials and confronting one after a loss to the Cincinnati Bengals.[8] On December 30, 2013, Kyle, along with his father and the rest of the coaching staff, were fired from the Redskins.[9]

On February 1, 2014, it was reported by media outlets that Shanahan was hired as offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns.[10] On January 8, 2015, Shanahan resigned from his offensive coordinator position after disagreeing with the front office's mandate that rookie QB Johnny Manziel start.[11]

On January 18, 2015, the Atlanta Falcons hired Shanahan as their new offensive coordinator.[12][13] After going 8-8 in 2015, the Falcons' offense under Shanahan was the highest-scoring offense in the league in 2016 and earned an 11-5 record, a division title, and a Super Bowl LI berth.[14] Shanahan was named the NFL Assistant Coach of the Year for the 2016 season.[15]

During Super Bowl LI, the Falcons had a 28-3 lead over New England, thanks to Shanahan's play calling and the Falcons' crisp execution of those plays. However, Shanahan was criticized for being too aggressive by not using a ball-control running attack late in the game which, along with a crucial turnover by Falcons' quarterback Matt Ryan, resulted in the Falcons losing.

Head coach[edit]

On February 6, 2017, one day after Super Bowl LI, Shanahan was officially hired as the next head coach of the San Francisco 49ers.[16][17]


  1. ^ "Welcome new life members". The Alcalde. p. 97. 
  2. ^ USA Today: Texans make Kyle Shanahan NFL's youngest offensive coordinator
  3. ^ Washington Post Sports Bog: Schlereth calls facing Redskins offense ‘a nightmare’
  4. ^ Denver Post: Kyle Shanahan learns the ropes
  5. ^ Denver Post: "Mike Shanahan's descendent ascends"
  6. ^ Houston Chronicle: Texans' loss would be Ags' gain
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^ "Belichick fined 50K, Kyle Shanahan 25K by NFL - Yahoo! Sports". Retrieved January 20, 2017. 
  9. ^ Wesseling, Chris. "Mike Shanahan fired as Washington Redskins coach". Retrieved February 7, 2017. 
  10. ^ "Browns to hire Kyle Shanahan as OC". February 1, 2014. Retrieved February 1, 2014. 
  11. ^ "Shanahan leaves Browns". January 8, 2015. Retrieved January 8, 2015. 
  12. ^ Sessler, Marc (January 18, 2015). "Atlanta Falcons plan to hire Dan Quinn, Kyle Shanahan". Retrieved January 18, 2015. 
  13. ^ Schefter, Adam (January 17, 2017). "Sources: 49ers plan to offer Kyle Shanahan head-coaching job". Retrieved January 17, 2017. 
  14. ^ "Falcons counting on league's highest-scoring offense". Houston Chronicle. Retrieved February 4, 2017. 
  15. ^ Bergman, Jeremy (February 4, 2017). "Kyle Shanahan named NFL Assistant Coach of the Year". 
  16. ^ "Kyle Shanahan Named Head Coach of the San Francisco 49ers". Retrieved February 6, 2017. 
  17. ^ Shook, Nick. "Kyle Shanahan named head coach of 49ers". Retrieved February 6, 2017. 

External links[edit]