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49ers coach Jim Harbaugh praises Kyle Shanahan’s ‘creative’ offense

Jim Harbaugh Kyle Shanahan

University of Michigan head coach and former San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh is a big fan of current 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan, particularly in the way that he runs the offense.

Harbaugh, who coached the Niners from 2011 through 2014, enjoys watching tape of San Francisco.

“I can tell you this: I like watching their tape, especially on offense,” Harbaugh told Tim Kawakami of The Athletic. “A lot of creative things and kind of on a weekly basis. I enjoy trying to — I wouldn’t say steal because, in football, you don’t regard it as stealing things. You regard it as doing your homework. I do enjoy that.”

The 55-year-old also likes Shanahan’s approach in terms of planning.

“He’s very creative in the game planning,” Harbaugh said. “You see plays that work, that get somebody uncovered. That’s hard to do, get somebody uncovered on a passing play or a blocking scheme where there’s a big hole. That doesn’t happen that often.”

Harbaugh went 44-19-1 during his four-year stint as 49ers head coach, leading San Francisco to a Super Bowl appearance during the 2012-13 campaign and also taking the Niners to the NFC Championship Game in both 2011-12 and 2013-14.

However, after a disappointing 2014 season in which the 49ers won just eight games, Harbaugh was dismissed as San Francisco’s head coach and went on take the head-coaching job at Michigan in 2015.

Since then, he has gone 38-14 and has posted a 1-3 record in bowl games.

Meanwhile, the Niners have not made the playoffs since the 2013-14 campaign and won just four games this past year.