San Francisco 49ers

Former Niner fullback of 8 seasons returns to San Francisco

Tom Rathman agreed to return to the San Francisco 49ers’ coaching staff Wednesday night as their running backs coach.

Rathman, a former 49ers fullback for eight seasons and two Super Bowl titles, was San Francisco’s running backs coach from 1997-02 under coach Steve Mariucci. Rathman followed Mariucci to Detroit in 2003 before spending the last two seasons in the same job with the Oakland Raiders.

Although San Francisco coach Mike Singletary hasn’t even begun interviews to replace offensive coordinator Mike Martz, he moved quickly to hire Rathman after an interview Tuesday.

Rathman was thought to be a candidate to go to Seattle with former Raiders offensive coordinator Greg Knapp, who has agreed to take the same job with new Seahawks coach Jim Mora. Knapp, Mora and Rathman all worked on Mariucci’s staffs in San Francisco.

With the 49ers from 1986-94, Rathman helped the 49ers win two Super Bowls and totaled 4,392 yards from scrimmage and 34 touchdowns. In college, he starred at Nebraska in the early 1980s, and Rathman is a native of Grand Island.

Rathman finished his NFL career with the Los Angeles Raiders in 1994.

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