49ers GM John Lynch on Jerick McKinnon, the helmet rule and more

49ers GM swung by ‘The Damon Bruce Show’ on Tuesday

Karl Buscheck
August 21, 2018 - 6:00 pm

John Lynch, general manager of the 49ers, joined “The Damon Bruce Show” on Tuesday for a wide-ranging and enlightening conversation.

Most notably, Lynch offered an update on Jerick McKinnon, who’s nursing a calf injury, which has derailed his preseason preparation.

"He was starting to really get into that rhythm, and so, is it ideal? Absolutely not,” Lynch said on 95.7 The Game. “But I think Jet got a good feel of what we want during the course of the entire offseason. That goes back to OTAs and all that."

"I think we also got a feel on what he does best. It's certainly not what you'd want, but the other side of it is he'll be fresh, and he'll have those fresh legs Week 1, and we look forward to having him back."

Lynch also offered up…

*His thoughts on the new helmet rule

*Richard Sherman’s outspoken ways

*Plus the rookies who have already caught his eye

Here’s the GM in his own words:

Damon Bruce joined by John Lynch

Damon, Ratto & Kolsky
Tuesday, August 21st
49ers GM, John Lynch, joins the Damon Bruce Show. 

Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

It's time to save a loaded John Lynch to 49ers general manager John thank you so much for joining us this afternoon great to have you on how much happier. Are you to be on with meat and stuck with Lorenzo Neal who c'mon how little that guy goes along what it right. Are delivered Odeo c'mon let's let you have courtside. I love my guy low but I have to be out which has looked to there was it's huddled. War of where you might end up I'm glad that we won I really am thank you so much so. John when you're hired I thought that anyone who would be hired in your position was two years away from being in about two years away that's you that's sort of what you inherited it's why you entitled got six year deals that corresponded with each other because you both knew that this was gonna take some time. In here you are now in year two and were actually camping down expectations. Amazing what a quarterback can do. I think you're ahead of schedule officially do you. Well you know I I would say Damon we didn't really to have a schedule and I think that's why it was important to have. This picture deals. For for no other reason that it it could allow us to make decisions for the right reasons we wanted to set up the situation. But he can go out with some money that we had at our disposal and just spend and insane amount of money and and compete right away but can he sustain it and and we wanted to build this thing the right way. We wanted to affect it a culture by creating great people who represent the core values that were all about. And I think when you do you have an opportunity to make it sustainable I would say that we knew from. From the beginning of the conversations that Kyle and I had an I don't think you know we were ingenious for a for for coming up you know with with this idea that that we could really accelerate that if we found our franchise guy and it probably takes a minute avenue that we might of took expected right at the beginning. But we're fortunate that we did. Find final warning Jimmy drop below. You know when we have we said we'll give it looked can and we think he has qualities that could. That he that they could lead did Ambien. Is that a short sample sizes that is there a little bit of belief but it's sure but it's. You know we we feel like like in our mind that bit Jimmy showed us that he is a guy who would be guys that we wanted to move forward. Heard a great analogy on good morning football from Kyle brand who was talking about unity Shawn Watson in Jamaica rock below two guys have only played seven games. Officially small sample size but. You know it's like when you get poured a little taste of wine like you smell late UU swirl way and you're like yeah go ahead you pour that that's legit and and that's what I think we're looking at really would drop below and certainly Watson was standing as well but. You need to be a football expert to seek quickly did this guy fits the malls. You know like that analogy yeah I was probably a little bit more prone to just take the shot is. Is ready to take a look smell and it's different and that these quarter you know he's a coach and he should should do you. I think you can see that talent with Jimmy. You know I think that's where it'll work out and I. Have complement each other well in different situations he's very pragmatic and you know I'm in let's go forward and in other situations he's the guy who's. Who's going forward and I'm finished slowed down so I I think in that situation. That the key thing is that I think yo we start with a good foundation and we started with the foundation of all we're doing is making. What we thinks a wise investment to take it a great look at a great talent and that we knew he was that but that we found out everything else about them and I get a lot of credit. Firms for not playing in the mets' second week but saying I am not put an amendment even if we don't see him this entire year I'm not gonna put them in there until. He's ready to be successful and and you give Jimmy a tight credit because he put the work in and we also what happened when he did play he made everyone around him better. He really was the tide that lifted all the boats in the harbor no doubt John Lynch 49ers general manager here on the Damon Bruce show. John you nervous at all that jet McCain and might not be ready for week one I'm worried about your team a little bit of word about my fantasy team as well. Well that's certainly not ideal. You know I think he would love to see a guy like that. Have an opportunity to really establish a rhythm and comfortable. Oh with the first unit and get get comfortable with this playbook it's in the midst playbook it's complicated playbook. The nice thing is the run scheme is an overly complicated we've run you know similar concept said the different looks over and over so. I think he would start to really get into that rhythm and so is it ideal that absolutely not. But I think Jessica a good feel of what we want. You know during the course of the entire offseason that goes back OTAs and all that. And you know I I think we also got a good feel on on what he does best and and it it's it's certainly not what you want but it. You know the other side of it is he'll be fresh and those fresh legs we want him and that we look forward to having him back. There it is right from the GM week one man can and fresh legs back I love it look I'm a little concerned at running back with McKinnon breeder and Williams all. Instantly suffering injuries to the point where you know most certainly make Nichols Arnie knows they're getting could be given opportunities with the Alfred more assigning in my in my to look at the more assigning as an indictment. Some your depth there. Take me through the signing of Alfred more sway really opposite. I don't think it you know I I don't think it's an indictment at all. You know we we like to all of our backs I did I do think you know 11 quality dale have his speed and that's a great thing because I think our. I think I'll you know one thing I have always appreciated dynamite I think has an offer to coordinator he utilizes speed as well as anybody I've seen and so. You wanna have guys that can rule but. I think you want a little changeup as well and that that you know that some frankly we were little concerned that come about but you know I have to attend many times that inkjet McKinnon although most. Smaller in stature he plays big and I think that will prove prove itself. You know throughout throughout his is career here but I think Alfred Morse is a guy that. That I'll and his staff have had great familiarity with kiwis he was out there we had had a bidding conversations with him for some time before Jack got hurt. And with a guy that frankly we didn't feel like we need it didn't turn whole lot seat and we wanted to given that many reps to the young guys as possible. And we started out some injuries we thought it was the perfect time to pull the trigger and Alfred. You know around and themselves is itself into shape getting back comfortable with the system. And you know we're excited to see him get some opportunities in the last preceding games he where he's now. Are very well spoken Stanford educated general manager guests for those of you who do not know or cannot detect when we're talking to him. Was one of the most savidge vicious hitters in the history of the National Football League you were a thumper of the first degree sir it was phenomenal. To watch. This helmet rule. Cannot be sitting well with you and your football playing days incidents. Now I. With the competition committee asking them to call and you know there's going to be some some rough spots. On you know I think to a point where there's some consistency and it and that's what everyone struggling with. But. You know I had I think. A great quote from Bill Belichick I think it's one thing to do is you know my parents always stop me when did you wanna be successful study successful people on. So that it doesn't matter whether I like the rules or don't like the rule might just understand the ruling coaches and so. I think that's what we're all striving for is an understanding of what is the rule because. Think you know you can articulate it and defined it on paper but I think we're all kind of that feel out process how are they gonna call this an. I've been here before I think the good thing about. Obviously is is that typically by the time we get to the regular season and I know this is at a rapid departure from where we've been. It starts to define itself and I just hopeful that he comes to that so that we all have a great understanding of what exactly is allowed him. And what is it. I think he'd be find in suspended so often you couldn't even afford to play in the league did you. I don't. I don't know if you saw on Twitter if you checked it all out today but when we linked the fact that you were gonna come on the show today. I put a highlight a view basically separating Marshall Faulk from the reality of this world. And I hit that you put on him and I mean I seriously I think you have a three week suspension if you ever hit anybody that Arden and in 2018. Legally legally it is totally let those. Desperate. At. Well with that was you know it was a different game there really wasn't and you know people ask could I have played I would like to believe that I would have adjusted Mike Talbott. I don't sometimes we've gotten to a point now where it's so hard that you might as well just expected so I think I played at the right time but. Well intended is certainly what the helmet rule is but another. Really savvy hard hitting Stanford educated guy. Richard Sherman your prize freeagent he hates it is well he's already addressed it on Twitter saying the people. Who put this rule in place obviously don't understand the physics of the natural tackle when you have your own players that you went out to sign saying that. Yeah how much concerned you really have about this being. Change did this could change the outcome of several football games not just on your schedule but on everyone's got. Well this and I I think one thing when we signed Richard Sherman. One thing that we talked about is say he's going to say. It is is going to be a guy who's gonna have his opinion and we that we shouldn't think that's gonna change who we predicament here. Now I don't think I'll tell you about Richards opinions they're typically well thought out and so. You know he's he's a grown man and he's gonna have that you can have that you know defendant stand behind all those I think he's spent a tremendous job throughout his career diplomat some time he gets emotional but. You know I think Richard what will will adjust to the rule is just like everybody else well that's what great players do. But I don't think he's the guy who's gonna buy it is done and actually went on his mind so. Two that's one thing that comes with the package income and we love that package that he. Absolutely hopefully he is healthy and ready to go as soon as possible to re getting ready for week one John Lynch 49ers general manager. Here on 957 game. So I really quick thumbnail sketch of your rookies Dante pettis Fred Warner Mike mogul when she who's been a standout for you. I think all those guys you know I really do McClatchy. It's so foreign to me to watch him here. Because one thing you know this just the more you honed in on him he's a big man he's got a he's lanky he's got he's long levered. All of those things split you know one thing that JJ watt says demeanor on the field down there. After they went it went against each other while he's this really surprise me bee and again that that's. That tall and that long but he can still spin and the power he has. I think he's X that will continue to improve for you know. Why did we trapped them because we felt like he was a plug and play could play right away and could play at a high level and do it for a long time and I think we're even more convicted on that after spent some time around Mike will be perfect now. It never is split I think he's he made at the right stuff he's incredibly talented and so we're super and this. We'd love the fact that he could play three receiver positions in and and he has shown us that he can't do that you know and and do that with great deal the other thing he brought instantly. Because you know how quickly they're gonna adapt to an offense and everything that's asked of them. But we knew right away he would help us in the return game and one of the fun things and we're talking about the guy who's the all time leader in punt return touchdowns. In the NCA history. And it and I watch it happen right before our eyes when you guys in and we drafted this and we drafted a kid named DJ read in the fifth round it was. The number two punt return in the country last year. He blocked a little harder because they understand that I didn't play the ball concur that this you know that these guys can go the distance and so we're watching that happen. And that responsibility brings alive and the credit Warner. Peace he was a tough guy discount because he he played a different position. At B where you could almost played like a nickel. Nickel back out in the slot. But we felt like his skills and profile really translated to the way we are inside linebackers play. And you know mystic pizza and she's got here. He that he arrived here he's he's incredibly cerebral at the position very athletic. And a lot of people had a question about this is calorie but he shortest. He loves the physical body and has really excelled at itself. Those three guys I think there's you know our various Moore is a guy who is making the transition the quarter. We've been very impressed with with his transition. You know DJ Reid is a guy introduced has shown up he shows up every day in practice in and then makes a play and always know that he's going to be under percent full speed. In our sixth rounder Marcel here it is a guy who had an Achilles injury but. You know was common back struck a play well and and tweaked his hamstring so. You know we're waiting for him to get back and help that your second round yours. You know that's around that's been good do it this year it looks the same Richey James. A receiver who's who looks like he can contribute right away. And then Julian Taylor is a guy who can do with some injuries has started for us on the there are really strong rookie class that remains to be seen they get a good show that they can do it in regulation but the wind up there early returns. John it's one of the most thorough complete thoughtful answers any question I've ever asked to GM do you realize that I asked trying to ball he wants what his favorite side dish was at Thanksgiving. And he dodged that question like that was awesome thank you very much and should. For being so open and honest I don't want tough one for you hopefully he'll be open and honest about this one because. Robin Foster obviously had a very tumultuous offseason and now that that's behind you the franchise in him. What do you hope are the lessons learned to buy the player. And after that. What are some of the lessons you hoped it'd been learned by local media. Well I think for the play and and I can tell you is that group and has taken this car and it. He's really used as an opportunity. To really improve himself there's two really. You know too cute to look deep into himself and say OK what do I want edit this career what do I want out of my life and we try to help provide resources and teaching that you can't put yourself in certain situations even if you know ultimately is because you know and so I think was proven that you know it he he he maybe wasn't to blame for it. You know that he can't even put yourself in those situations and I think Reuben spent there a great deal of of reflection and work. On on how to best not put men. Consult in those situations I think that will be on going and just visited for a lot of young kids around the world proud of the effort to make it. He's terrific player he's a tragic. Spear I think Kevin I think this could be you know some Mets started rough. You know I think one thing I learned is that. You know we knew we kept puts structure around him but that's that's a lot easier they did it well at Alabama Brett you know and in college that's a different deal because they're men when they leave the facility we can't be with them 24 hours and so. Maybe that's a little more difficult but you know so we all learned lessons from a that's what the media learned that you know I can't speak for them you know I understand have a job to do. Was it typical for me and for power. You know throughout this process you're you know we have families and you know we care about issues just like everyone else does it when you feel convicted one thing we talked about when we took this job his world. You know some of the deep conversations is that we're gonna always try to do the right thing and that's that means sometimes you'll be popular sometimes. It will be. Accepted by you know by a ton of people but we gotta do what we believe is right that's what we did in this situation unfortunately. You know he's he's he's here and you know I think trust in him was was was proved to be. You know I don't know whether the right decision but in our mind it was thin and so I think we just we we understand that. We move forward from and we ought to continue on that tactic to get better and better and and I think Rubin most most taken that aren't more proud of for that. Appreciate how candid you wore on that John Lynch 49ers general manager back to the fun stuff how happy use of hard knocks is in Cleveland and not your backyard are. This is you know I. I think about it if you. Motivation there's only motivations to be successful in this league it's which strives for book one of the great motivation it would make the playoffs we never have to think about that. That's like I do every day you know put it is it I will tell you that speaker mayfield thing they came out on Jack Dorsey is there a note John Dorsey. Fairly well if you haven't watched it that it is going to be yet. We'll watch it tonight for sure really appreciate. Having you on thank you so much for joining us and it's now I think it's important no. It's not a battle and party trophy. It's about avoiding hard knocks. I'm taking away from this thank you so much John it was great talking you have yourself a great day but yeah. John Lynch GM. 49ers. Awesome stuff. Like seriously awesome stuff.
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