When it comes to being a GM, is it more about who you know than what you know? In his latest column, Albert Breer of The MMQB spoke with one league official who suggested that the NFL’s career development advisory panel has something of a fraternity-vibe.
“It’s all full of nepotism. It’s a joke. And it starts with Charley Casserly,” the personnel man said.
Casserly rejected the idea that he, Ron Wolf, Bill Polian, Ernie Accorsi, John Madden, Tony Dungy and Carl Peterson are aiming to line up their friends with jobs, but he did acknowledge that connections help.
“It’s so different than it is with coaches,” Casserly said. “Coaches are so clearly defined. You know who calls the plays, you see them on TV, coordinators have press conferences. It’s just not like that in scouting. Are they pro? College? None of them are making big decisions. What you need is networking. It’s not politicking.”
Casserly was directly involved with the Jets’ coach and GM search process in 2015. Gang Green wound up hiring Todd Bowles and Mike Maccagnan – two former co-workers of Casserly’s.
Here’s more from Breer:
- Breer identified the following executives as people who could immediately jump into a GM job somewhere: Chiefs VP of player personnel Chris Ballard, Patriots VP of player personnel Nick Caserio, Ravens assistant GM Eric DeCosta, Seahawks co-director of player personnel Scott Fitterer, Texans director of player personnel Brian Gaine, Packers director of player personnel Brian Gutekunst, Seahawks co-director of player personnel Trent Kirchner, Cowboys assistant director of player personnel Will McClay, Cardinals VP of player personnel Terry McDonough, Vikings assistant GM George Paton, Falcons assistant GM Scott Pioli, Bengals director of player personnel Duke Tobin, Packers director of football operations Eliot Wolf.
- The widespread feeling in NFL circles is that Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh will be back in pro football eventually, even if it’s not happening right now. For his part, Harbaugh says that he is incredibly happy as the Wolverines’ coach.
- Is Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen the next under-the-radar quarterback prospect a la Carson Wentz? It was Craig Bohl who recruited Carson Wentz to North Dakota State and he is now Allen’s coach at Wyoming. It’s hard to say whether the 6’5″, 222-pound signal caller has the same kind of talent, but his stock is rising. “He’s a big ol’ kid with a big arm, and he’s pretty athletic too,” said one AFC exec. “We gotta learn more about him, but the tools are there.” Allen, a redshirt sophomore, has plenty of time to develop.
- Western Michigan coach P.J. Fleck recently predicted that Central Michigan quarterback Cooper Rush will be an “incredibly high draft pick” this year. Apparently, talent evaluators do not agree. “He may get drafted late because of the [lack of] quality at the position,” said one area scout assigned to CMU. “He’s an accurate thrower with deceptive athletic ability to extend plays with his feet. Not a dynamic or explosive athlete, but good enough to avoid the rush and create at times. Average arm at best, but he’s got solid touch on intermediate and deep balls. He just lacks elite velocity.”