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Ed Donatell says it’s fair to block him from interviewing


The 49ers blocked the Saints from interviewing secondary coach Ed Donatell for their defensive coordinator job, a right that teams hold over coaches under contract unless the opening is for a head coaching job.

Donatell addressed that possibility during Super Bowl week and his thoughts leave you with the conclusion that he’s okay with missing out on the shot at running the defense in New Orleans. Donatell said the rule, which he dealt with when the Niners blocked the Bucs from interviewing him last year, because he signed a contract that he was under no obligation to sign and believes he should see it to its completion. It probably doesn’t hurt that he also thinks that he’s part of something worthwhile in San Francisco.

“Nothing is better than this. I’d give up the years of advancement to be a part of this. There is so much that goes along with it. This is the highest high. This is why you coach,” Donatell said, via

People at all levels aren’t always so keen on honoring the commitments of contracts that they enter into willingly, which makes Donatell’s take on his own deal fairly refreshing.

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15 Responses to “Ed Donatell says it’s fair to block him from interviewing”
  1. mazblast says: Feb 6, 2013 3:22 PM

    Honoring a signed contract. What a bizarre concept!

  2. nfloracle says: Feb 6, 2013 3:26 PM

    Donatell’s just being smart. Why would he flip from a chosen winner like the Niners to the potential maelstrom of New Orleans next year? A lot of people seem to think Payton’s going to work miracles and get the Saints back into contention again next season, but there are a lot of things that need fixing in New Orleans. A lot of things. Maybe not as many as in Charlotte, but close…

  3. eaglesw00t says: Feb 6, 2013 3:30 PM

    So Im guessing the rumors from the Philadelphia media that Donatell is basically their guy is bogus.

    Way to go Philadelphia media. You knocked another one out of the park. No wonder newspapers are going out of business. Youre no longer in the “news” business…youre in the “rumor” business. And as a newspaper, you shouldnt just go creating your own rumors…

  4. canamac86 says: Feb 6, 2013 3:37 PM

    I’m still haunted by 4th and 26… wonder if Donatell is too seeing as he lost his job over it and hasn’t been a coordinator since. Don’t know what I’m talking about? Type “4th and 26” into wikipedia.

  5. brownsfanincali says: Feb 6, 2013 3:41 PM

    This sounds like the Ed Donatell I remember… I played high school football with him in Stow, Ohio about 40 years ago, he was always a guy willing to help the younger guys like me, was kind of ” coaching ” even then… great player, great guy as I recall, the only place I’d rather see him would be with the Browns ( but that’s selfish on my part, even though I live in Cali now still a huge CLE fan ).. just a matter of time before he’s a head coach somewhere, he’s just too good at what he does not to be. All the best, Ed !!

    Greg Lowdermilk
    Folsom, CA

  6. harealedood says: Feb 6, 2013 3:50 PM


    Weren’t the Saints “chosen winners” 3 years ago? Didn’t the 49ers just lose the SB? This 49er team has 2 years tops before CK gets a monster contract and stunts their progress

  7. chawk12thman says: Feb 6, 2013 3:54 PM

    SF seems to generate loyal comments/support from those that the front office is holding back. First Alex Smith tows the line and says nothing negative about them looking for a new QB last off season, then sitting him for a 2nd year QB when statistically he was at the top of the QB ratings and set to make a run at becoming SB Champs. Now, an assistant coach who has been kept from interviewing for a promotion for two consecutive seasons comes out in support of there actions.


  8. noring4youstill says: Feb 6, 2013 3:58 PM

    Yeah you just let that secondary go down the drain and see how they honor that contract.

  9. hendeeze says: Feb 6, 2013 4:13 PM


    So using your logic, the Saints are now in their slump because Brees signed a monster contract. 2 more years with the unburdened salary cap Niners is better then the stunted growth Saints are going through now, wouldn’t you think?

  10. trollhammer20 says: Feb 6, 2013 4:21 PM

    You mean after the way the 9er secondary played the last six games (giving up an average of 29.1 ppg since the Justin Smith injury), there’s someone interested in promoting the coach?

    Oh, wait, it’s the Saint defense we’re talking about. My bad.

  11. yssupasigninnamnotyep says: Feb 6, 2013 4:57 PM

    Really? All he has to do is turn down the interview request and the job if offered. Don’t make it out like he’s some kind of hero because of the rules.

  12. patfic15 says: Feb 6, 2013 5:22 PM

    After getting lit up in the playoffs…no thx

  13. letmesetyoustraight says: Feb 6, 2013 6:25 PM

    He really doesn’t have a choice but to play nice. Harbaugh should have given him the chance to move up. If Donatell did the interviews and didn’t like the fit, he could always stay with the 49ers if he likes it there.

  14. ilovefoolsball says: Feb 6, 2013 11:35 PM

    The Superbowl loser rarely fairs well the following year.
    The 49ers will be lucky to make the playoffs next year.

    Then they will let you go buddy and you can thank them for this classless move.

    Hey at least you can use them as a reference.

  15. goldenperspective says: Feb 7, 2013 12:19 PM

    Maybe the Niners would have said yes had it been an organization that wasnt trying to cripple their players a year ago.

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