GM Watch: Eight Days In …

Brian Bassett , TheJetsBlog.com

Last Friday, the Jets started their GM search with David Caldwell, now GM of the Jaguars.  With up to six new interviews the last few days, here’s a quick reminder of where we are in the GM search and some of the gathered intelligence on the different players still left (or maybe just rumored to be) in the picture for the Jets.

In The Mix

cohen2Scott Cohen: Jets Assistant General Manager
Notes: As of yet, the Jets only internal candidate that has been mentioned. Cohen was said to have “blown away” his interview with the Jets, but then reports surfaced that he might be a last resort.  Cohen would have a internal knowledge about the Jets and how to get out of their current cap issues. Cohen has history with other successful organizations, most notably Philadelphia where he worked closely with Andy Reid.  While Terry Bradway’s exact role is unclear, it is Cohen’s job to set the table for Mike Tannenbaum and the table looked bare in 2012 despite injures.  Maybe most notably, Cohen has set up a channel of talent from Philly. Lito Shepphard, Austin Howard, Ricky Sapp and AJ Schable are some names that come to mind that the Jets have brought over from Philly — once Cohen arrived in 2008, the influx of Eagles talent was unmistakable.  That said, his intel didn’t help in in grabbing a player like Danny Amendola off the Eagles practice squad and who the Jets were said to have been eyeing back in 2009 and who has gone onto better things with the Rams.

Tom Gamble: 49ers Director of Player Personnel
Notes: Gamble had one interview last year and lost out to Les Snead in Saint Louis.  Everyone who knows and works with him says he’s quite competent, is something of a “glue guy” in the organization and has more rapport around the league than his boss Trent Baalke has in terms of working out agreements between teams and with agents.  Gamble has pro and college scouting background, as well as some coaching experience. He comes from a pedigreed NFL family and we thought he was the next in line for the GMship of the Jets and looked to be last Saturday.  A week out now, it seems much less likely but he’s expressed his interest to be the GM for the Jets and the Jets liked him but were (reportedly) not bowled over by his interview.

ross_marcMarc Ross: Giants Director of College Scouting
Notes: Ross was on the radar a year ago when he interviewed in Chicago and at last check was still in consideration for the Panthers. Ross is a Princeton graduate who has worked his way up as a scout from the Eagles and then Bills before being tagged by the Giants and taking players like Kenny Phillips, Terrell Thomas (oft injured but 11 INTs in three years of playing) and Mario Manningham.  Ross is smart, camera friendly and known as a good communicator … which would play well in New York.  Not much has been said about how Ross’s interview with the Jets went, which is interesting …

The Expanded Search

gaineBrian Gaine: Dolphins Assistant General Manager
Notes: Gaine’s biggest public perception problem is that he’s lived in the shadow of the Tuna, and now Jeff Ireland in his time in Miami.  Even so, a GM told NFL.com last month that Gaine “really knows what he’s doing. And I think he’s ready.” Gaine comes from a playing and playing personnel experience and could be a candidate that impresses the Jets this afternoon in his time with the team.  He also has ties to the organization which could bode well for him.

idzikJohn Idzik: Seahawks VP Administration
Notes: Idzik has a diverse background.  Idzik comes from a football family with some ties to the Jets. His father was part of the organization early on.  While Idzik is in charge of the cap for Seattle has also has experience scouting and continues to work in that role for John Schneider.  He’s got a diverse skillset and might be a good manager of a larger group though not coming out of the scouting group right now, might be less apt to get hired elsewhere.

Omar Khan: Steelers Director of Business & Football Administration
Notes: Khan has a similar profile to Mike Tannenbaum.  Long time capologist and not a guy with a wealth of scouting experience himself.  Khan is often noted for his leadership skills but would need to lean on a talent evaluator for him to lead the team.  Many consider that Khan was the de facto GM for Bill Cowher.  The longer Cowher stays away, the more likely it is that Khan will have to make his own way … but should Cowher consider a return to coaching …

jangelo2Jerry Angelo: former Bears General Manager
Notes: Angelo helped to build teams in both Tampa and Chicago over the last two decades.  Angelo fell on hard times last year in Chicago after a series of questionable decisions that came in response to trying to keep up with the Packers and Lions.  Angelo is competent in personnel but might have had more trouble of late with contracts and managing the cap.  Angelo might need an administrator or capologist to help him stay on top of moves to best leverage the cap.

Jim Popp: GM of CFL Montreal Alouettes (RUMORED)
Notes: It’s not known if Popp is actually interviewing and the idea of adding him might be more attractive than actually making a bold move like hiring him.  Still, he was considered last year on the Colts hire, this year on the Jags and Panthers hires. Lear more about him here.

Jimmy Raye: Chargers Assistant GM (RUMORED)
Notes: The Jets have only had rumored interest in the assistant in Raye.  Raye is an up and coming GM candidate and worked with AJ Smith in picking some an impressive array of talent for years in San Diego.  Raye’s father was a running backs coach for the Jets under Eric Mangini and Rex Ryan.

Out of the Picture

Dave Caldwell (Falcons -> Jaguars)
Eric DeCosta (Ravens)
Tom Telesco (Colts -> Chargers)