Report: Scot McCloughan’s departure from 49ers was alcohol-related

Getty Images

Getty Images

When the San Francisco 49ers were preparing for the 2010 NFL Draft, it was GM Scot McCloughan who was supposed to head that process. However, McCloughan abruptly re-signed on March 18, 2010 leaving the duties to current GM Trent Baalke. Now we know why.


According to a report by ESPNs Seth Wickersham in which I heard through CSN Bay Area’s Matt Maiocco, McCloughan was battling alcohol abuse and had checked into a Betty Clinic. A problem that was kept a secret, it was 49ers CEO Jed York who would routinely visit McCloughan at the clinic to see how he’s doing.

After 30 days in the clinic, McCloughan came away realizing he abused alcohol but was not an alcoholic. And while Mccloughan drank beer rather than hard alcohol that quickly changed once he received divorce papers. Instead of drinking beer he would go for the vodka and drink it all day out of a gatorade bottle. “It’d take me away from reality,” McCloughan says. “All of a sudden, everything’s gone. Just have peace. Everything that was going on with my wife at the time, everything with the kids, everything with the job, it’s ok. That was my drug. It was a liquid drug.”

A month before the 2010 NFL Draft, York asked McCloughan, “Is it time we separate?” McCloughan felt his time had run out but was in no way upset. But if someone doesn’t want his help, he says, “I’m gone.”

Paul Sakuma/AP

Paul Sakuma/AP

And while many people think that it was former 49ers head coach Mike Nolan that helped transform today’s roster think again as it was McCloughan who yielded Pro Bowl players RB Frank Gore (3rd Round), TE Vernon Davis (1st Round), ILB Patrick Willis (1st Round), T Joe Staley (1st Round), while also adding free-agents OLB Ahmad Brooks (Bengals) and DE Justin Smith (Bengals). Not to mention, he also drafted starters such as FB/RB Michael Robinson, OLB Parys Haralson, TE Delanie Walker, DE Ray McDonald, FS Dashon Goldson, CB Tarell Brown, WR Michael Crabtree, and DE Ricky Jean-Francois you can see where McCloughan’s value lies.

After leaving San Francisco, McCloughan took a job with the Seattle Seahawks as his good friend and current GM John Schneider offered him a position as a high ranking member on the team’s scouting department. However, that marriage was short-lived as McCloughan resigned before the 2014 NFL Draft, according to the report.

Ryan is the Founder/CEO of NinerFans.com, 49ers Beat Writer, Live Game Day Correspondent for Bleacher Report and member of Pro Football Writers of America. Born and raised in San Jose, he also graduated from San Diego State University. His work has been featured on NFL Network, 95.7 The Game, National Football Post, Sports Illustrated, FanSided Network, ESPN Radio, CBS Sports 810, and NBC Bay Area News. For more information, please contact him via email at ryan@NinerFans.com or call him at (408) 622-0996.

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