Move by 49ers raises questions

The stunning news Monday was the firing of 49ers OC Jimmy Raye, a move that raises several questions just 16 hours after he was given a vote of confidence by head coach Mike Singletary.

Singletary has already insisted the decision was his, and his alone.

We’ve already re-learned this season not to believe NFL head coaches (thanks for the reminder, Andy Reid), but Singletary has proven to be nearly incapable of not giving us his honest opinion. So if Singletary really did have a change of heart after watching film, it leaves one to wonder about the larger offensive philosophy of the 49ers.

Some view the situation to be that Raye was fired for carrying out the offensive principles that Singletary mandated.

Mark Purdy of the Mercury News writes that Raye was hired because he supposedly fit the architectural framework that Singletary wanted, and wonders if the players don’t believe in the plays. Scott Ostler of the San Francisco Chronicle points out Raye was hired as an antidote to Mike Martz and was one of few candidates who would be willing to carry out Singletary’s offensive vision.

As Ostler suggests, there was no way the 49ers were going to fire Singletary now. Which left Raye as the target. If the 49ers are already in disarray after three weeks — and Michael Lombardi suggets the problems run deeper than just Raye — the questions about Singletary’s future presumably can’t be far off if the loses pile up.

— Frank Tadych

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