Kyle Shanahan has a problem and the perfectionists in the audience can sympathize.
The 49ers head coach strives for flawlessness from himself and his team, which means he spends a fair amount of time feeling less than satisfied.
“We want everything to be perfect,” Shanahan said, “and that’s why most of the time, I’m not that happy.”
For his first six months in his new job, Shanahan has offered a happy face to reporters in news conferences marked by relaxed and expansive answers that have punctured holes in his previous reputation for aloofness and arrogance.
On Saturday night, however, Kyle the Happy Camper vanished after his first loss as an NFL head coach was an unsightly one: The 49ers committed five turnovers and 11 penalties in a 33-14 preseason loss to the Broncos at Levi’s Stadium.
When it was over, a reporter asked Shanahan what his answer was for his team’s “continuous lack of discipline.”
“What do you mean by that?” Shanahan asked testily.
When told it was a reference to his team’s 28 penalties in two preseason games, Shanahan answered curtly: “You just keep working at it.”
On Sunday, after Shanahan had worked at his team’s issues by poring over game video, his mood had brightened by the time he spoke on an early evening conference call. One reason: What he’d witnessed wasn’t quite as bad as it appeared.
“I felt last night, during the game, I mean, nothing feels much worse than that when you have all those turnovers and penalties,” Shanahan said. “… But when I got in and watched the tape, it wasn’t quite as bad as it felt.”
Shanahan pointed to correctable mistakes and said he also felt good about the performance of quarterbacks Brian Hoyer and rookie C.J. Beathard.
They combined to complete 15 of 23 passes for 199 yards with a touchdown and an interception. The pick, which was thrown by Hoyer, was a catchable pass that was bobbled by wide receiver Marquise Goodwin. Hoyer also lost a fumble when a would-be pass slipped out his right hand in mid-motion. And Shanahan also mentioned a drop by tight end Vance McDonald.
“When you look at each situation,” Shanahan said, “ especially when you talk about the (starters) on offense, it takes 11 guys to execute a play. And if you have one guy off a little bit, it breaks down. And when you look at the opportunities the starters had, it really was one guy here and there.”
Of course, this could continue. After a 2-14 season, the 49ers simply might not have enough talent in Shanahan’s first season to have 11 players consistently doing their jobs well.
That is, some of Shanahan’s problems might not be immediately fixable. McDonald, for example, has a history of unreliable hands. And Goodwin, despite his impessive training camp, has never had more than 29 catches in his first four seasons. And Hoyer is on his fourth team in four seasons.
So how will Shanahan handle leading a sure-to-be-flawed team in 2017?
There figure to be more moments when he fails to conceal that, as he said, he’s often really not that happy.
“I try to compose myself by the time I talk to you guys after practice, but I’m pretty pissed after practice, too, when it doesn’t go well,” Shanahan said. “… And whenever you go out to a game like that, you want to win and you want to play well. And you turn the ball over like that, and you have the penalties that we did, I’m definitely going to be pissed off and I expect everyone in our building to be pissed off. If they’re not, that’s when I would be worried.”
Eric Branch is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: EBranch@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @Eric_Branch