If most NFL teams have two coordinators, one offensive and one defensive, in their press-box perch overlooking the field, the 49ers have a distinct advantage.
They really have three.
One week into the season, senior offensive consultant Eric Mangini has come in handy for the 49ers coaching staff. So said the offense’s play-caller on Thursday, entering San Francisco’s Week 2 matchup in Seattle.
“He’s been great. Very, very thorough work put in on us and the opponent,” Greg Roman said. “He contributed to the game plan last week as he will every week. During the game, he’s in the booth with us helping us upstairs, communicate … between series.”
As Roman has alluded to, Mangini may have called a play one name for years in other cities and is now calling the same play something different in the 49ers playbook. He spent much of his previous 15 seasons of coaching on the defensive side of the ball. Obviously then, he brings an expertise Roman can pick from. He sees things from an angle Roman may not.
Now they’re speaking the same language.
“He’s up there, eyes on the defense and between series, we’ll get together and talk," Roman said.
The offensive coordinator added that, while he may script a given game's first series', his play-calling is dependent on the opponent, on the situation and on his fellow coaches. Beyond Mangini, there's a host of voices on the headset that includes quarterbacks coach Geep Chryst and Jim Harbaugh.
“It’s not a board meeting," Roman said of their in-game banter, "but we’re getting to the point where we can communicate a lot more efficiently than we did once we started.”
Of course, Mangini adds something different to the discussion.
The 49ers other coordinator, defense guru Vic Fangio, was asked during training camp whether he had sat down with quarterback
“Him and I had never have. Occasionally I would walk by the (quarterbacks’) meeting room and say a thing or two and they’d ask,” Fangio said. “That’s why Eric’s here now.”