The 49ers hired Chris Foerster as a consultant in the 2018 offseason. It did not become public knowledge until Friday.
49ers coach Kyle Shanahan spoke to NBCSportsBayArea.com after news broke about Foerster’s employment with the team.
“If he was fully on our coaching staff, going to practice and going to games, I understand that it’s something that I’d have to address, but he’s not,” Shanahan told Jennifer Lee Chan. “He’s in a consulting role. A lot of teams have consultants. I understand the ramifications of that, and why people will ask why I didn’t say anything about it.”
Foerster has not coached in the NFL since video surfaced Oct. 9, 2017, of him snorting a white powdery substance. He resigned as the Dolphins’ offensive line coach.
Foerster and Shanahan spent four years together in Washington.
“We found out about it [the video] when the whole world found out about it,” Shanahan said. “When it happened, we were as shocked as anyone, from my wife to anybody. It’s nothing I’d want to stick up for. These are extremely bad things that I know he’s not proud of, and I’m not proud of.
“He did something extremely stupid, and since then, he has hit rock bottom. He went to rehab for 60 days, and then he was in a 90-day outpatient rehab. For the last two years, he’s been in a 12-step program that he’s been to every single night seven days a week.”
Shanahan said the 49ers hired Foerster with conditions attached. Foerster will have to earn a bigger role than watching film and attending position group and team meetings.
“I’m just pulling for him that he can keep up with it,” Shanahan said. “If he does keep up with it, then whether it’s with the 49ers or with someone else, you’re going to get a good person and a good coach.”