Dave Ziegler To Join Saints Through 2024 Draft

When the Raiders fired head coach Josh McDaniels midway through his second season with the team, general manager Dave Ziegler was also dismissed. The latter has found his next NFL opportunity, at least on a short-term basis.

Ziegler is joining the Saints as an advisor through the upcoming draft, CBS Sports’ Jonathan Jones reports. This temporary agreement will give New Orleans an experienced voice in key personnel decisions over the coming weeks as the team navigates its annual slate of cap gymnastics and free agency. The draft itself will of course be another crucial checkpoint on the offseason calendar.

Ziegler started his executive career with the Broncos in 2010. He worked as a player personnel assistant that year, but some of his subsequent experience came on the scouting side of the operation in Denver and New England. The 46-year-old worked his way up to player personnel director with the Patriots in 2021 before taking the Raiders’ GM gig.

Things did not go according to plan in Vegas, however. The Raiders went 14-20 during his time in charge, a span which took on a distinctly ‘Patriot Way’ flavor. A number of ex-Patriots players were brought in, including quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo. The veteran encountered new injury concerns in his debut Vegas campaign, and he was benched in favor of rookie Aidan O’Connell by interim coach Antonio Pierce. Garoppolo’s PED suspension will allow the Raiders’ new regime to cut bait, but finding a replacement will be a top offseason priority in the bid to move on from the McDaniels-Ziegler tandem.

The Saints have a number of important decisions to make in the near future, including a continuation of the restructures and extensions which will be needed to get under the salary cap ceiling. A number of veterans – including wideout Michael Thomas, whose contract is set up for him to be released – will likely be let go, though. Replacing them via free agency and the draft will be key factors in the Saints’ bid to reach the postseason after going a combined 16-18 under head coach Dennis Allen. It will be interesting to see if Ziegler earns an extended stay in New Orleans or helps his stock for another executive position elsewhere once the draft has concluded.

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