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2011 NFL Awards: Jim Harbaugh Named Coach Of The Year

Before the tape-delayed 2011 NFL Awards show aired, the NFL Tweeted that San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh has been named the 2011 NFL Coach of the Year.

San Francisco @49ers Coach Jim Harbaugh named Coach of the Year. #nflhonors 23 minutes ago via TweetDeck · Reply · Retweet · Favorite · powered by @socialditto

Harbaugh led the 49ers to a 13-3 record in his first season as head coach, winning the NFC West for the first time since 2002. Once they were in the playoffs, they upset the New Orleans Saints in the divisional round and made it to the NFC Championship game where they were defeated by the Giants.

Harbaugh is the first 49ers coach to be named the NFL Coach of the Year since Bill Walsh won the award in 1981 for leading the Niners to a 13-3 regular season record and a Super Bowl victory over the Cincinnati Bengals. Harbaugh received 45 of the 50 votes, while three went to Packers coach Mike McCarthy and two went to Broncos coach John Fox.

According from the Los Angeles Times' Sam Farmer, 49ers quarterback Alex Smith accepted the award and gave a speech on behalf of his head coach.

For more on the 49ers, visit Niners Nation.