Jan 20, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; San Francisco 49ers former owner Eddie DeBartolo (right) and co-chair Denise DeBartolo York (left) present the trophy for the NFC Championship game against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome. The 49ers won 28-24. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Former 49ers' owner DeBartolo talks Harbaugh contract

San Francisco 49ers’ head coach Jim Harbaugh has been the subject of widespread rumors in recent days.  With the departure of high profile coaches – Texas’ Mack Brown for example – Harbaugh’s name has been included as a possible candidate to fill that position, and others.

He is in the third year of a five year contract that pays him $5 million as the average annual value, but former 49ers’ owner Eddie DeBartolo thinks it’s time for CEO Jed York to lock things up long term, according to a report from CSN Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco.

“But like all great coaches, you get to a period of time and . . . Bill (Walsh) was that way, even George (Seifert) was that way,” DeBartolo said. “They get wound really, really tight. And there is a certain period of time when you get a burn out. Some coaches, it’s earlier. Some coaches, it’s later. And some coaches don’t have it.”

The legendary Walsh went 21-27 through his first three seasons as 49ers’ head coach.  He did win a Super Bowl in his third season – and two others after that.  Seifert inherited the team from Walsh in 1989 and went 38-10 in his first three seasons – winning a Super Bowl in his first and sixth.  Harbaugh came to the 49ers from Stanford, like Walsh, and has guided San Francisco to a Super Bowl berth – their first since 1994 – and has gone 33-11 so far.

More than that, Harbaugh has led San Francisco back to prominence in the NFL.  Locking him up to a long-term contract has to be a priority, according to DeBartolo.

“I think it’s important that he gets things tied up,” DeBartolo said. “And we talked yesterday and I think they’re well on their way of getting it done.”

Tags: Jim Harbaugh NFL San Francisco 49ers

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