Maureen Smith

NFL Staff Rumors: Commanders, Packers, Colts, Cardinals, Rams

The Commanders had the biggest offseason front office staff change of any other franchise as Josh Harris became the new team owner in Washington. There are plenty of issues that need to be addressed throughout the organization, and surely, Harris will be getting to all of them, eventually. Early this morning, though, Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports gave some insight into what may be a top priority for the new executive.

While recent rumors surfaced claiming that another change to the team’s name was imminent, Jones reports that, for now, they will remain the Commanders, as a name change “isn’t being seriously considered at this time.” While getting back to a winning culture and reconnecting with the community are certainly among the top priorities, the biggest issue is reportedly finding a new stadium to play in.

The team recently hired Thad Sheely as a consultant in the endeavor. Sheely was instrumental “in the development of MetLife Stadium more than a decade ago.” With FedEx Field routinely being considered one of the league’s worst facilities, the brass has been working with local governments in Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia to discuss potential sites or public funding.

The organization would ideally like to have a site selected by the end of 2024, while the construction of a stadium that can “host major events like a Final Four and Super Bowl would take about four years” more. The team’s current lease at FedEx Field is active through 2026.

Here are some other recent staff updates from around the NFL:

  • The Packers announced the addition of Maureen Smith as the team’s new chief financial officer last month. Smith comes to the NFL from the MLS, where she most recently served as the executive vice president and chief operating officer of Minnesota United FC. Beginning her career as a CPA in public accounting, Smith now has “more than 20 years of diverse experience across the sports, healthcare, consulting, and finance industries.
  • The Colts made an effort at the end of August to replace the analytics value lost in John Park‘s departure for Dallas and George Li‘s departure for Carolina. Indianapolis hired Greg Starek as their new director of football analytics, according to Nate Atkins of the Indy Star. Starek joined the 49ers last year as a senior performance analyst after a career as a data scientist for the San Francisco Giants of the MLB. He’ll continue to carve out his space in the NFL in Indy.
  • The Cardinals brought in a new executive to focus on the business side of the team last month. According to Cardinals director of editorial content and senior writer Darren Urban, Jeremy Walls is that new executive, serving as the team’s new chief operating officer. Walls most recently spent the last several years in Miami with the Dolphins.
  • The Rams experienced a departure in their staff near the end of last month, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network. Former director of football affairs Jacques McClendon has left the team to join the WME Sports agency. McClendon will now be an agent working in the agency’s coaches and executives division.