San Francisco 49ers Lose $14 Million On Jim Tomsula Gamble

San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke took a gamble on former head coach Jim Tomsula, and the risk cost his team $14 million, according to CBS Sports.

After a long and public feud with then San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh, who’s now with the Michigan Wolverines, Trent Baalke had a very big and tough decision to make.

Trent Baalke had veteran NFL coaches who wanted to take over the reins of the San Francisco 49ers and continue the Super Bowl pursuit that Jim Harbaugh had started for them.

Former Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan and former Green Bay Packers head coach Mike Holmgren, both of whom have Super Bowl victories, were passed over.

The San Francisco 49ers also had the opportunity to hire hot young offensive coordinator Adam Gase, but they screwed that up by demanding he keep Jim Tomsula around.

When the smoke cleared, Trent Baalke ended up taking a chance on a guy who had never been a head coach or offensive coordinator in the NFL. Baalke gambled on Jim Tomsula.

As a rookie head coach in the NFL, Jim Tomsula did not do all that bad. Going 5-11 doesn’t automatically mean a coach should be fired, but the fans were desperate for a big change.

Jim Harbaugh
Jim Harbaugh

After their final game of the NFL regular season, the San Francisco 49ers made the decision to fire Jim Tomsula without giving him a second chance to show that he can do the job.

When Trent Baalke announced that the San Francisco 49ers were going to be paying the full amount of the contract to Jim Tomsula, a lot of eyebrows were raised because that’s rare.

Usually, general managers in the NFL like to put clauses in contracts that enable them to recover some of the contract money if the fired coach gets a job elsewhere in the league.

That leads many to believe that Trent Baalke had no idea that he would be firing Jim Tomsula after just one season. He was hoping to give him at least two seasons to try the new job.

Jim Tomsula has already been paid $3.5 million of his entire salary, and the remaining $10.5 million should be coming along shortly. Some believe that it will be a lump sum pay-out.

Since he is getting paid that much money, finding a new job in the NFL becomes a bit easier for Jim Tomsula, as he doesn’t necessarily need the opening to be a very high paying one.

Trent Baalke
Trent Baalke

Jim Tomsula can pick and choose which assistant coaching job that he wants. He can even try to find a defensive coordinator opportunity, provided he can convince them to trust him.

As for the San Francisco 49ers, this hurts them pretty badly, even though the public relations response has been that they are going to eat the money because it was a business decision.

In addition to paying Jim Tomsula, the San Francisco 49ers will also be shelling out what appears to be a really large amount of money to a new guy to become their new head coach.

While San Francisco 49ers owner Jed York is publicly supporting his general manager, he cannot be happy that Trent Baalke cost him a good amount of his wealth with a mistake.

That means Trent Baalke could soon be walking on egg shells with the San Francisco 49ers if his next head coaching hire doesn’t turn out to be as good as he had expected.

Another head coaching mistake would not only mean that Trent Baalke is out the door with the San Francisco 49ers, but it could mean his final general manager gig in the NFL.

[Photo by Thearon W Henderson/Getty Images]