The unexpected 2-0 start to the season from the 49ers traces in part to their full-week detour to Youngstown.
After Sunday’s 41-17 win over the Bengals in Cincinnati, 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan explained to PFT the benefit of not flying back and forth to California between games.
He didn’t believe in the benefit of staying put when playing on the other side of the country from one Sunday to the next, until he became the 49ers coach. He then quickly realized that there’s a “huge difference” between remaining in the same time zone between games and ping-ponging back and forth to San Francisco.
“It hurts the team to be away from routine and family,” Shanahan said, but he explained that, when traveling back and forth, “guys are dead no matter what we try to do.”
He explained that he got the players to buy in to the notion of being away from home for a full week by explaining to them the reasons for it. It also helped that they won easily in Cincinnati.
Shanahan said that, by the middle of last week, guys were feeling the effects of adjusting to being in Ohio, with little or no energy. By Sunday, they were better than fine.
“Today, guys were bouncing off the walls,” Shanahan said after the win.
Shanahan added that the 49ers likely will spend another week in Youngstown between Week 13 at Baltimore and Week 14 at New Orleans. The results of Week One at Tampa and Week Two at Cincinnati should go a long way toward getting the players to agree to spending the first week in December in Northeast Ohio.