John Lynch vowed on Monday to “aggressively pursue” some of the people in the NFL that he views as the best in the business. Not even 24 hours later, that promise is already bearing fruit. The San Francisco 49ers general manager made his first move on Tuesday.
Adam Peters, the former Denver Broncos director of college scouting, has agreed to terms to be the 49ers vice president of player personnel. Peters has spent the last eight years in Denver and another six seasons with the New England Patriots. He has three Super Bowl rings, five conference championships and 10 division titles to his name.
Peters has spent nearly a decade as one of John Elway’s most trusted confidants for good reason. One member of Denver’s front office reportedly called Peters, “a savant.” Broncos running back C.J. Anderson thanked Peters for being the one to give him a chance in Denver. Peters deserves credit for Denver’s acquisitions of Von Miller, Chris Harris Jr. (undrafted free agent) and Malik Jackson – all players who were key contributors in Super Bowl 50.
The fact that Elway even let him interview with the 49ers was significant. But for Lynch to get Peters to join him in San Francisco illustrates the kind of respect that the 49ers new GM commands.
It circles back to what Lynch said on Monday. Keep in mind, it’s important to never draw too much from a press conference – or in this case, a conference call. You can’t win or lose a presser, per se, but Lynch’s candor was still refreshing.
For starters, it was great to hear Lynch’s confidence in regards to his qualifications for the job. Fans were eager to hear about his areas of expertise.
“I know football. I’ll put my football acumen up with most in this league,” Lynch said. “I know people and I know how to lead.”
“I’m eager to earn their trust,” Lynch said. “I think the feelings that some might have there are natural. … I understand that, and I’m fully aware that myself and the team I put around me – we’re going to have to earn that respect. The only way to do that is through your actions. For us, that’s showing it on the field.”
A thorough self-evaluation is crucial for anyone in Lynch’s position as a first-time general manager. Understand what you bring to the table, and ensure you find the right people to pick up the slack in other areas. Lynch doesn’t have a decade of NFL personnel experience, but it only took him a matter of hours to lock up someone who does.
Lynch is a proven leader with a vision for the 49ers. He now has one of the NFL’s most highly-regarded eyes for talent in his corner. The process has only just begun, but Adam Peters is a tangible first step in the right direction.