That's a load of bull. No amount of offensive genius can cover up a lack of talent. Bill Walsh didn't do crap without his loaded 49ers squads. Shula wasn't the problem, the offense did what the offense was designed to do: control the ball and take pressure off Cam to do everything. We didn't squander loads of skill players, we made do with the hand dealt us and just didn't make all the plays we needed to move on.
What great talent did we have in Rivera's first year compared to Shula?
You severely undermine / undervalue the effect of playcalling on football.