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Mike Singletary tries to take control as doubts fester about coaching staff

The 49ers say they aren’t panicking about their communication problems over the weekend, but they recognize they have significant issues that need to be addressed.

Mike Singletary is calling post-game team meetings.  He’s doing one-on-one interviews to explain that things will be corrected, but that the coaching staff needs to be better.

Still, he doesn’t know exactly how he’ll fix the team’s tendency to take too long to get playcalls in to quarterback Alex Smith.

“[Offensive Coordinator] Jimmy [Raye] understands he has to do a better job getting it in,” Singletary said. “We’re going to work on it this week.  Jimmy is going to remain the play-caller. That’s what he’s here for. Whether he’s in the booth or on the field, we’re going to figure it out.”

This is basic stuff and Singletary is no longer a rookie coach.  Yahoo’s Jason Cole said these playcalling problems have been festering for a year.  Raye is taking most of the heat.

“[Raye] knows the plays and he knows the right thing to call, but he’s fumbling through his papers and it’s like, ‘Hey, we need to get a play called,'” a source told Cole.

The communication issues in San Francisco seem to go beyond the playcalling. Singletary called the late night team meeting in part to tell the players he ripped after the game that they are all on the same side.

“I wanted to make sure that guys understood exactly what I meant of the things that I said after the game and to make sure that one of the most important things is that we stay together, as coaches and players,” Singletary said.

It’s only Week Two, but this is a critical challenge for Singletary as a head coach.  Cole writes that the playcalling problems and the lack of a clear solution to them could “undermine the already tepid trust the players have in the coaching staff.”

The 49ers embraced the high expectations they had this year. Mike Singletary wants this team to be more professional than it has been in the last decade.  To do that, he has to solve the kind of problems that team meetings and speeches can’t fix.

He has to show to his players that he’s got things under control.

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43 Responses to “Mike Singletary tries to take control as doubts fester about coaching staff”
  1. AllThat says: Sep 15, 2010 11:46 AM

    yeah and the offense was themain problem in that game huh?
    What about the defense?

  2. sacdaddy says: Sep 15, 2010 11:50 AM

    Alex Smith is still in the league?

  3. answer3 says: Sep 15, 2010 11:55 AM

    i still the think the problem is deeper and maybe falls on the head coach. Call me a crazy, but isnt this what the preseason is for?

  4. JSpicoli says: Sep 15, 2010 11:57 AM

    Singlebary does not have things “under control”, should be fired, but the York are lame, and Sing should never have been hired in the first place as a head coach in the nfl.

  5. Wartooth says: Sep 15, 2010 11:58 AM

    So when the whiners are 0-4 will the so called experts admit that they were wrong by anointing them NFC Champions during the summer?
    I doubt it, all they have done for 3 days is make up excuses for them.
    Just tell the truth…They suck!

  6. DaveCardsAz says: Sep 15, 2010 11:59 AM

    Pants on the ground, pants on the ground.
    Looking like fools with yo quaterback throwin’ sideways…

  7. manderson says: Sep 15, 2010 12:00 PM

    Jimmy Raye has always been a crappy coach. He sucked in KC and he’s suckin’ in SF. I hope he stays there though because I hate SF.

  8. Laffing Stock says: Sep 15, 2010 12:05 PM

    Sooner or later, people in San Francisco are going to figure out that Singletary is NOT a good head coach. Being a motivator doesn’t win in the NFL — it wins in college. He’s not an Xs and Os guy, had never been so much as a coordinator at any level, does not know how to manage a game or a clock and is outcoached game in and game out. Further, he insists that he can win with a run-heavy philosophy, which doesn’t get it done in a pass-happy NFL. He’s also made the same mistake his predecessor did — hitching his star to Alex Smith.
    Beyond that, he hired Jimmy Raye to be the o-coordinator — a guy who’d had 7 previous stints in that position before with 7 different teams, but who had never had an offense finish higher than 13th.
    This team continues to be a joke. Mike Singletary is not the guy, Jimmy Raye is not the guy, Alex Smith is not the guy and the York family ownership continues to be a dyfunctional, directionless pile of crap. So tough to watch this team after growing up with the great teams under DeBartolo.

  9. DEMOLITION says: Sep 15, 2010 12:14 PM

    There you guys go again – piggybacking off someone else’s article

  10. savagenation says: Sep 15, 2010 12:16 PM

    I know the legendary, greatest coach in NFL history, Bill Walsh, has passed, but I wish we could bring him back. He could still do a better job…………Prop him up like Weekend at Bernie’s, and the Niners will win

  11. realitypolice says: Sep 15, 2010 12:18 PM

    Mike Singletary is a high school coach. Big on the rah-rah, big on the people side, small on the game planning and game/clock management side. Probably a great teacher, definitely a lousy head of an organization.
    This is why he is perfect as a position coach- smaller group of guys he can coach and motivate the hell out of, while someone else makes all the important decisions.
    Don’t feel bad, Mike, it’s not that uncommon for you former player types. Can you say Mike Tice?

  12. CHIEF ZEE says: Sep 15, 2010 12:20 PM

    These issues should have been corrected in the preseason…if I was the owner, I would start looking for another head coach.

  13. Jack Acid says: Sep 15, 2010 12:25 PM

    Defense wasn’t nearly as bad as being billed. 1 TD off a pick 6 and another TD off a turnover deep in their own territory. Seattle didn’t have a first down until 5 minutes left in the second quarter and that was off an utterly BS PI call.
    I think Mike Singletary can be a good head coach, but he has all his eggs in the wrong basket (Raye/Smith). Raye was a bad hire. Singletary needs a bright offensive mind to run that side of things and Raye isn’t it.
    I don’t know how long of a leash Singletary is on with Jed, but he better ensure these two clowns don’t cost him a job.
    I say hand the playcalling over to Mike Johnson, the QB coach. He is well liked and respected in league circles and is considered an up and comer.
    Word is there have been tensions between Mike Johnson and Raye and one can safely speculate that it’s at least partially related to the pukey playcalling that is Raye’s “scheme”.
    Outlook for this team is the same it was coming in: A good QB and OC away from being a competitor.

  14. DanSnyder says: Sep 15, 2010 12:25 PM

    I somewhat agree with raiderrob21. Typically teams are built to compete within a division and get more then a third of overall game experience year in and out through divisional matchups. For awhile the top teams coming from the NFC west have been competitive in due part because the division has been extremely weak and they arrive in the post season with few injuries. Compare this to extremely competitive divisions where injuries are common and by playoff time a good number of quality players are on IR you can see why the NFC west teams end up competing in the playoffs.
    The biggest issue I have seen from SanFransico is coaching. The coaching staff may have heart in singletary but that is by far not nearly enough. Their offensive philosophy of pounding the ball is respectable, but the way they choose to accomplish it, the offensive coordination and scheming is pretty bad. I mean hell they went 8-8 when they play in a division with the seahawks, rams, and cardinals. Since they were 5-1 in the divison last year they won a total of THREE yes THREE games outside the NFC west, even the 4-12 Redskins won more games outside the division. This is accomplished by some talented players, some of the most talented at certain positions like linebacker and tightend and to a lesser extent running back. But they have enough talent to win the division. Jimmy Raye is a terrible OC, and in general their offense is terribly implemented. The defense is solid but the secondary is questionable. The 49ers offense under Jimmy Raye honestly reminds me of the Redskins offense under Jim Zorn. No imagination, bad adjustments, quality overall of playing calling just subpar to other teams.
    I like singletary as a headcoach, not love, I like him as a motivator but the rest of his coaching staff I care for little. The 9ers even with alex smith have enough talent to win the division but talent with bad coaching doesnt get you very far, TRUST ME I know of course being a Redskins fan.

  15. Dave says: Sep 15, 2010 12:25 PM

    DaveCardsAz says:
    September 15, 2010 11:59 AM
    Pants on the ground, pants on the ground.
    Looking like fools with yo quaterback throwin’ sideways…
    AWESOME!

  16. JoeSchmoe says: Sep 15, 2010 12:26 PM

    I’m by no means a SF fan, but I still think they win the NFCW. And Singletary is going to get this ship righted… When you come from such an extraordinary team like that Bears squad that he was a part of building, and then you have to go and coddle sissy ass players and make men of them (which he’s done a helluva a job at – See: Vernon Davis), but still have a handfull of players to turn into men (See: Mike Crabtree, probably Alex Smith too) it’s a whole different ballgame that he has to adjust to. He’s still relatively new to this. What was he supposed to do, turn down the HC gig? No, it was offered and 100% of everyone on this site would have also accepted the challenge.
    Jimmy Raye might need to be fired if he can’t get his play calling right. That’s about all there is here if you ask a casual observer. Other than that, you let Singletary continue his quest to build his type of team. This “fire a coach if he hasn’t won a Super Bowl by year 2″ crap has got to go. You’ll be in a perpetual cycle of SUCK if you don’t stick with a guy at some point and ride out his vision.

  17. Renoberger says: Sep 15, 2010 12:30 PM

    He can start to get things under control by taking the play calling from Jimmy Raye and giving it to Mike Johnson, the QB coach.

  18. NFL4EVER says: Sep 15, 2010 12:30 PM

    How long has Jimmy Raye been in the league?
    The fact someone has him an OC after everything he hasn’t accomplished in his career is beyond me, I’m guessing that if he were white he’d be calling plays at Humboldt State.
    Not too impressed with Singletary as a HC either when you get right down to it.

  19. tre_fizzle says: Sep 15, 2010 12:32 PM

    after the 49ers beat the Saints on MNF, there will be 500 articles on how great the organization is from top-to-bottom. Typical panic mode. Carry on.

  20. Scrodge2010 says: Sep 15, 2010 12:33 PM

    Your reading WAAAAAY to deep into this Florio.

  21. RickS4o8 says: Sep 15, 2010 12:36 PM

    One loss and Singletary is not a good head coach. I bet everybody wasn’t saying that sh*t when he was beating the shit out of Chicago and AZ on prim time last year. Singletary is a good coach, it was a horrible performance and terrible lack of communication. It doesn’t matter if your head coach doesn’t know how to hit the drawing board for X’s and O’s. Most of the damn head coaches in the NFL have other people slave away their lives as coordinators. Raye is not a great coordinator by far, he struggles with calling the same plays and not taking advantage of defense’s weakness. But get over the Singletary not a good head coach bullshit, he’s not an offensive guy. The game that the offense falls to sh*t everybody wants to say he doesn’t know what he’s doing, thats a f*cking joke.

  22. Cyrus the Viking says: Sep 15, 2010 12:41 PM

    Singletary’s ability to connect with his players and motivate was enough to give them a bump in an area they needed last year. it is not enough to take them to the next level. it is not to say that Mike cannot become a good head coach, but he is simply part of the trend in recent times in the NFL to take guys with no HC experience who have never even been coordinators and put them in charge.
    Singletary has some of the intangibles but not the nuts and bolts and as a result looks incompetent – not his fault, he did not hire himself as HC- he would have been better off going the traditional route and spending some time as a coordinator etc.

  23. BigSuede says: Sep 15, 2010 12:49 PM

    The truth is the niners are pretty talented. An above average head coach and getting mcnabb during the offseason would have made the niners serious super bowl contenders this year.
    With Singletary the niners will always be lucky to finish 8-8. Singletary says over and over again that QB is not the most important position in football, and he tries to prove this by keeping a mediocre QB.
    It is time the niners to go after Gruden, if the niners can pick up locker or luck in the draft… this team will look pretty good

  24. Bay Area 415 says: Sep 15, 2010 12:51 PM

    As a die hard Niner fan, I’m used to our season’s being over in Mid October. But with the season coming to an end in September, it might be time to take up, say, badmitten on fall Sundays

  25. Paul says: Sep 15, 2010 12:51 PM

    After the way the Falcons blew these guys out 45-10 last year with a team that didn’t have much, if any better talent, Singletary should have gotten boot at the end of the year. No other game, except last week, showed how clueless Singletary is. He’s not an NFL caliber head coach. And, yes, this mess starts with the baffoon that is John York. Is it any wonder since this franchise has gone from being among the class of the league to the dregs under his watch?

  26. realitypolice says: Sep 15, 2010 12:59 PM

    RickS4o8 says:
    September 15, 2010 12:36 PM
    One loss and Singletary is not a good head coach. I bet everybody wasn’t saying that sh*t when he was beating the shit out of Chicago and AZ on prim time last year.
    ======================
    Actually, I remember lots of people saying that after he took what many people considered a possible playoff team in the preseason and turned them into an 8-8 dissappointment.
    As far as him not being an “offensive guy”, I am pretty sure he is the head coach, thus responsible for all aspects of his teams performance. If he wants to focus on defense, he can resign and go be a defensive co-ordinator.

  27. realitypolice says: Sep 15, 2010 1:02 PM

    tre_fizzle says:
    September 15, 2010 12:32 PM
    after the 49ers beat the Saints on MNF, there will be 500 articles on how great the organization is from top-to-bottom. Typical panic mode. Carry on.
    =================
    If the 49ers beat the Saints, they will deserve praise. As of right now, they are sitting on a blow out loss to a team many people are picking to be the worst in the league. Hate to break it to you, fanboy, but that will get you criticized every time. Deal with it.

  28. Hauschild says: Sep 15, 2010 1:05 PM

    Singletary is a shining example of how having the gift of gab can vault you into a position you’re nowhere near qualified for.
    Hopefully, this unproductive trend of the past 10 years has been put to bed. NFL teams aren’t the only businesses suffering because of piss-poor executive executive and managerial hires.

  29. CookieFlash says: Sep 15, 2010 1:17 PM

    Alex Smith is incapable of running an NFL offense.

  30. TheDPR says: Sep 15, 2010 1:22 PM

    If Jimmy Raye is the problem, it begs the question:
    Why doesn’t Alex Smith simply possess the leadership to call whatever play he thinks is best and just say he couldn’t understand Raye through the helmet speaker system?

  31. superb owl says: Sep 15, 2010 1:25 PM

    Singletary is a motivator but he reminds me of several other coaches… rhodes, dungy, smith… they dont make adjustments. so when things start going wrong fast, they keep going that way.
    raye, as other posters have deduced, is a hack. he has held a lot of teams back, and he has done nothing to improve crappy teams. buddy hire. a-a hire.
    think maybe the team was allowed by bad management to make a questionable choice for head coach? and more?
    as posted before:
    niners were the biggest fail yesterday. remember, they were supposed to win.
    no one in their right mind really expected the raiders to go east and win against a healthy titans team.
    and:
    we all know singletary wasnt the most experienced coach frisco could have gotten. have read everyone bitch about players.
    lets check out jimmy raye. this is his 14th pro coaching job, after 6 years in the college ranks and 2 years as a player.
    he has been an oc from 1983-86 with the rams and bucs. 1990 in new england. 2001 with the skins. 2004-05 in oakland. senior offensive asst in nyj 2002-03. TE/rb/oc in kc 19892-2000. and mostly wideouts coach, some backs coach the rest of the way.
    team records…
    1977 sf 5-9
    1978-79 detroit 7-9, 2-14
    1980-82 atlanta 12-4 (0-1), 7-9, 5-4 (0-1)
    1983-84 la rams 9-7 (1-1), 10-6 (0-1)
    1985-86 tb 2-14, 2-14
    1987-89 atlanta 3-12, 5-11, 3-13
    1990 NE 1-15
    1991 la rams 3-13
    1992-2000 kc 10-6 (0-1), 11-5 (2-1), 9-7 (0-1), 13-3 (0-1), 9-7, 13-3 (0-1), 7-9, 9-7, 7-9
    2001 wash 8-8
    2002-03 nyj 9-7, 6-10
    2004-05 oakland 5-11, 4-12
    2006-08 nyj 10-6 (0-1), 4-12, 9-7
    2009-now sf 8-8, 0-1 so far
    225-282. excluding kc, 134-221. i dont see what is so special about him.
    he sure didnt get kc over the hump. if memory serves me right, he was run out of LA. based on some of those records, that probly wasnt the only place he was run out of.

  32. BrooklynNiner19 says: Sep 15, 2010 1:26 PM

    Tre_fizzle@ I agree with your statement.

  33. Kegowhiskey says: Sep 15, 2010 1:28 PM

    Sounds to me like Singletary’s missing the leadership of the senior players. That’s surprising, because I thought I’d read in PFT that Vernon Davis was stepping up into that role. One guy can’t do it all, even if he’s the coach. He shouldn’t have to conduct one-on-one’s; the players should take care of that on their own.

  34. SaintsDieHard says: Sep 15, 2010 1:29 PM

    tre_fizzle says:
    September 15, 2010 12:32 PM
    after the 49ers beat the Saints on MNF, there will be 500 articles on how great the organization is from top-to-bottom. Typical panic mode. Carry on.
    ===================================then you wake up and realize….DAMN, it was all just a dream….WHO DAT! Saints 42- Niners-10
    NEXT!

  35. DH says: Sep 15, 2010 1:47 PM

    the 9ers just got beat by a superior team. The seahawks beat the 9ers last year with way less talent and would have beaten the 9ers twice if not for patrick will cheap shot on hasselbecks ribs when he was already down on the ground. the seahawks will surprise people. their defense is much better top to bottom and play with more of a mean streak. They are no longer the sea chickens they will step up to you and not back down. Ken Norton Jr the linebackers coach has the LBs hitting hard and taking name.

  36. StevieMo says: Sep 15, 2010 2:08 PM

    @LaffingStock– well said. Saved me a lot of ink.
    Crappy ownership continues to bring in inexperienced head coaches and “GM’s”. A truly slapdick organization.
    The Raye hire was an impetuous joke by a head man who is in way over his head and trying to learn how to be a coach, given his total lack of head coaching experience.
    Meanwhile, I’ve seen the same bad movie six year running now: “The Alex Smith Story.”
    Same bad ending every time.

  37. StevieMo says: Sep 15, 2010 2:12 PM

    tre_fizzle is the sound your wallet will make when you bet on the 49ers against the Saints this Monday….

  38. BobsCountryBunker says: Sep 15, 2010 2:24 PM

    Mike, it might be time to give them the “ol’ brown-eye wink” again. Seemed to work last year.

  39. JSpicoli says: Sep 15, 2010 2:32 PM

    I’ve been saying since Day 1 that Singlebary is a chalartan of a HC, and does not deserve the job.
    Day 1 TWO YEARS AGO.

  40. Dewey Axewoond says: Sep 15, 2010 2:55 PM

    God, this is what makes the NFL great. During the summer, the ENTIRE football world was swinging off the Niners’ pubes like a bunch of bandwagonning little Tarzans on vines, and
    Singletary was much loved and respected, the second-coming of Lombardi.
    And now, after one game–POOF!–Singletary is an over-rated cheerleader/H.S. coach, and the Niners’ are one of the worst organizations in the league.
    The average fans are like a flock of birds, they all swoop together.
    As a Bears fan, I have no horse in the horse (though I STILL like/respect Singletary), but I think the 49ers will beat the Saints this week, too.
    Why?
    Because no one else (besides tre_fizzle) thinks that they can, because the 49ers just had a god-awful showing, are having internal strife, and the media and fans have turned against them, and because the Saints are a very dangerous, well-rounded, bad-as$ed team, who should, by all football logic, clobber them into catatonia.
    It makes absolutely NO sense at all, and NO ONE expects it.
    Which is EXACTLY why I’m making my way out onto that treacherous, brittle limb and saying it:
    49ers beat Saints.
    P.S. Niners–Bears will trade you Lovie for Samurai Mike, whenever you’d like (assuming you’ve forgiven them for the whole Briggs/tampering thing).

  41. Rare9nerFan says: Sep 15, 2010 3:27 PM

    Rare9er Fan:
    I was at the SF/Sea game.
    Here’s my observation:
    1. The crowd noise at Quest is the loudest in the league given the number of false start penalties called on visiting teams each season;
    2. The Seahawk’s had former 9er Jeff Ulbrich as their linebackers coach;
    3. The Seahawk’s picked up Robinson off the cut list the week before;
    4. The 9er’s marched into Quest five abreast with arms locked;
    5. Given the crowd noise, inside intel, unearned arrogance, clueless AS, high school style motivation and confused coaching = unwatchable crap @$200/ ticket! What a rip!
    Now watch them beat the Saints – go figure?

  42. shehawks + retardnals says: Sep 15, 2010 5:12 PM

    Stubborn “it’s still a run first league” Singletary + hiring a tired old desperate OC Jimmy Raye + McClueless/Nolan taking AS over Arron Rogers = 6 years, and counting, of 49er offensive abortions.
    Leinarts 85% dump-offs passes sure look tasty right now to a Niner fan.

  43. Doogey says: Sep 15, 2010 9:20 PM

    Singletary was a cheap & convenient replacement for Nolan, Jimmy Raye well was available (imagine that) he’s not smart or fast enough to coach anywhere else & last but certainly not least the 49ers organization spent a lot of time & money on Alex Smith & are determined to MAKE it work. Well guess what it won’t work he’s not getting any better 6 yrs later & he MAY have a good game but then he will regress. This team will NEVER go anywhere with Alex Smith as the QB. Experiment over!
    Make the change now before another season is lost!

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