GM Watch: Twists and Turns

Brian Bassett , TheJetsBlog.com

Spartan mothers would tell their sons on their way to battle, “come home with your shield or on it.”

Best believe that’s in the forefront of our mind this week.

While we’re sticking with our story that the Jets have the major points of a deal in place with their eventual successor to the general manager spot, the plot thickened last night.  According to ESPN, Niners executive Tom Gamble is taking an interview with the Chargers on Tuesday.

Per ESPN insider Adam Schefter’s Twitter account:

This came after an earlier report Sunday from the knowledgeable Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune who said that the candidate search for the Chargers was coming to an end according to a source of his inside the Chargers.

The Chargers have talked to almost everyone they believe they need to or will get a chance to talk to, and their search for a new general manager is almost certainly down to two men.

Jimmy Raye, the Chargers’ Director of Player Personnel, or Tom Telesco, the Indianapolis Colts’ Vice President of Football Operations, will likely be named as A.J. Smith’s successor in “a day or two,” according to a team source.

The Jets are keen on finding a candidate that will agree in keeping Rex Ryan around for 2013.  Gamble was rumored to want to bring his coach with him wherever he might have landed.  So this tidbit in the Post is intriguing to see.

A key piece of the GM hire is how that person will work with Ryan. People who know Gamble say he would embrace the chance to work with Ryan and that he considers him a great coach.

And it confirms something we heard late last week from people close to Gamble, that going into the process the Niners director of player personnel saw the Jets as his most desirable landing spot.

So let’s put the pieces together.

  1. The Jets took contractual steps with Gamble that were not taken with Caldwell.
  2. Gamble turns down a second request in Jacksonville where Caldwell is likely to land.
  3. It’s reported Sunday that Gamble had postponed his visit with San Diego, using the indefensible “family considerations” reasoning.
  4. Gamble and his agent have to wait it out while the Jets have dragged their feet to get compliant with the Rooney Rule.
  5. An unsanctioned report comes out of San Diego midday Sunday saying the Chargers are close to their decision between two of the least splashy candidates for their GM position in Colts VP Tom Telesco and internal candidate Jimmy Raye.

So, would the Chargers want to make it look to their fanbase like they were doing their best to interview all the top candidates?

Would Gamble’s agent want to make it look like he’s still a desirable commodity beyond the Jets, just in case the Marc Ross interview blows the Jets away and Gamble gets left out in the cold?

While we’re clearly biased, Gamble has emerged as one of the most interesting candidates this season.  A report like the one that Gamble is taking an interview Tuesday in San Diego only makes the ultimate choices that the Jets or Chargers will make that much more compelling to the public no matter what they end up being.

I’m not saying that things couldn’t change — they very well could.  But believe that we’ll be on the story all week and will communicate any updates as we know them.  Still we’re going to stick to the theme that Tom Gamble and the Jets remain each other’s top choices — because they do.




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