Mirror images: LaFleur vs. Shanahan
The student versus the mentor. Packers head coach Matt LaFleur has worked with 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan almost his whole career. Both coaches get to see who gets bragging rights Sunday night.
"There are so many things that I learned from him. I think it's just his detailed approach that he takes everyday. He's a guy that has a great vision for what he wants to get done. How to use players. How to adapt. Put people in the right position. A lot of my football philosophy has been shaped by him. It's hard to sit here and say one thing that I've learned from him," Packers coach Matt LaFleur said.
There is a drawback to facing your confidant. They know your every move.
"I feel like we see so much alike. That's kind of a byproduct of working with somebody for so long and having a lot of conversations. I feel like he's taught me how to see the game," LaFleur added.
The Packers do have one wrinkle. Aaron Rodgers is a mastermind, and he has retained plays from the previous regime.
"I've seen a little bit of film cause obviously we've had some common opponents of their offense. They are running you know a lot of stuff that Matt was running last year, and that they ran in Atlanta with Matt Ryan and that offense. I think we have definitely added the stuff that we've done over the years here, and that would probably be the slight difference," Aaron Rodgers mentioned.
Not only are LaFleur and Shanahan good friends, but Sunday's game has a sibling rivalry. Matt's brother, Mike, is the passing game coordinator for the 49ers.
The game starts at 7:20 pm on Sunday.