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49ers expected to expand role for female coach Katie Sowers

AP Photo/Denis Poroy

The first female coach in San Francisco 49ers history, Katie Sowers, is expected to be retained by the franchise after the 31-year-old completed her summer internship on Friday, according to Mercury News.

Sowers, should she be offered a season-long job for 2017, would be the second full-time female coach in NFL history after Kathryn Smith served as the Buffalo Bills’ special teams quality control coach in 2016. With Sean McDermott and some new faces on the coaching staff, Smith was not retained for the upcoming season.

“It’s groundbreaking and all that stuff, but the more normalized it is, the better it is,” Sowers, 31, told this newspaper last week about her then-role with the 49ers, per Mercury News. “As a female, the more someone can ask me what I do and I say ‘I coach football,’ the less shock on their faces will mean the better direction we’re moving.”

Sowers has worked exclusively with the 49ers wide receivers alongside passing game specialist Mike LaFleur.

“I’ve had coaching experiences in the past where the older generation, they don’t want to cuss around me,” Sowers added. “But that’s working it’s way out. Everybody realizes, ‘She’s a coach. She’s not a woman sitting here. We’re all coaches.’ 

Sowers interned with the Atlanta Falcons in 2016, where she made a strong impression on then-offensive coordinator and current 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan.

Sowers previously played wide receiver for the U.S. National Team and as the general manager of the Kansas City Titans of the Women’s Football Alliance.

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