GM Watch: How Much Influence is Rex Wielding in the Search?

Going into last week, there were doubts about how realistic it would be for the Jets to hire a top GM candidate because of the contingency to keep Rex Ryan on board.  For a while over the weekend, it looked as if the Jets had some of the top consensus candidates heading into the GM search coming through their doors, but at this point, it’s hard to not see the Jets general manager search having Rex Ryan’s fingerprints on it.

According to Rich Cimini at ESPN NY, it’s his opinion that the shadow of Rex Ryan is looming large over the team’s search process.

Owner Woody Johnson still wants Ryan to be a major presence in the organization. That became apparent Tuesday at their joint news conference. Despite the losing season, Johnson gave an effusive vote of confidence to Ryan, also revealing that Ryan will be involved in the latter stages of the GM search.

Johnson confirmed that Ryan is part of the package, meaning the next GM has to retain the coach for at least one season. Johnson said he hasn’t received any negative backlash from potential candidates.

“I really haven’t had any reaction, no,” he said. “I think everybody feels like they’re pretty fortunate to have Rex because of what they know. They know he’s a good coach and you can’t always say that. It takes one of the uncertainties out of the equation.”

Brian Bassett, TheJetsBlog.com

I’m in favor of giving Rex input into the process, but it seems like the Jets took a right turn at some point this week during their search process.  How much say should the assemblage of internal folks who got the Jets to this point have in the say in a new boss?

It’s like asking the plumber whose poor work caused a major leak in your upstairs bathroom for advice on who should fix the problems.   Of course the whole process has not played itself out, but right now it sure looks like the Jets are scrambling with their second round of interviews set for today and tomorrow after failing on their first set of choices.  The Jets have targeted some good candidates and it’s clear that they are being very thorough, but we’ll have to wait and see how it all plays out from here.