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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

49ers' Jim Tomsula a name to watch in Bucs' search



There hasn't been much news revealed this weekend as it relates to the Bucs' coaching search, as information continues to be difficult to come by.

But we've stumbled on a name you should keep in mind: 49ers defensive line coach Jim Tomsula.

The Niners won on Saturday and will advance to the NFC Championship game next Sunday, but we're told the Bucs have interest in speaking with the 5-year member of the San Francisco coaching staff regarding a potential spot on Tampa Bay's new staff. It's not believed that Tomsula is a candidate for the Bucs' head-coaching post, but it is possible that he's under consideration for another position, such as defensive coordinator.

It's undeniable that Tomsula has done solid work in San Francisco. The 49ers led the NFL in rushing defense this season, allowing a mere 77.2 yards per game and 3.5 per carry. Defensive lineman Justin Smith is considered by many to be the defensive player of the year, something he reinforced in Saturday's NFC divisional playoff game against the Saints. The 49ers were tied for seventh in the NFL this season with 42 sacks.

If the Bucs intend to have a formal interview with Tomsula, they would be unable to do so until the 49ers are eliminated from the playoffs.

EDIT: A previous version of this post stated Tomsula's contract is expiring, as we were told. But we've since gotten some conflicting information on that front, so we'll leave it out for now.

[Last modified: Monday, January 16, 2012 11:18am]


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