The Texans have requested permission to interview Patriots director of player personnel Nick Caserio for their vacant GM job, as Mark Berman of Fox 26 KRIV tweets. As has been reported previously, Berman confirms that Caserio is Houston’s top choice.
Houston was in the hunt for a new GM in early 2018 as well, but New England denied the Texans’ request to interview Caserio. As Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk observes, in order to hire away an executive under contract with a rival club, the hiring team must offer “the primary authority over all personnel decisions related to the signing of free agents, the selection of players in the College Draft, trades, and related decisions; and . . . the primary responsibility for coordinating other football activities with the head coach.” And, even if the hiring team offers those responsibilities, the incumbent club can still block the interview if its season has not yet ended.
It sounds as though the Texans are prepared to offer Caserio full GM responsibilities rather than make him a “GM Light” who would cede significant power to head coach Bill O’Brien. As Albert Breer of TheMMQB tweets, New England was able to prevent Caserio and director of college scouting Monti Ossenfort from interviewing for the Texans’ GM job last year only because the Pats’ season hadn’t ended yet. This time around, though, the Patriots cannot prevent their executives from hearing Houston’s pitch.
That is, of course, if they are even interested. It would be difficult for an exec to leave the friendly confines of Foxborough for uncharted waters elsewhere, and the quick and unexpected firing of former Houston GM Brian Gaine would certainly be cause for concern. On the other hand, the Texans do have a roster that looks capable of immediate contention, and with a young and promising QB in Deshaun Watson, a first-time GM could certainly do worse than land with Houston.
The Texans have already interviewed Ray Farmer and plan to interview Martin Mayhew. One name that is not on the agenda as of yet is Cowboys VP of player personnel Will McClay, as Calvin Watkins of The Athletic reports (via Twitter). Watkins expects Houston to reach out to McClay, but he does not expect McClay to leave his current position.
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