The process of the Eagles hiring Tom Gamble as their vice president of player personnel took longer than he hoped, but the former 49ers personnel man said the time was right this year.
Gamble said there were several reasons why he wasn’t able to join the Eagles a year ago, but that his rare mid-offseason jump made sense this time. He interviewed with general manager Howie Roseman about the job formerly held by Colts GM Ryan Grigson last year, but was able to talk his way out of the 49ers for what amounted to a lateral move.
“The timing wasn’t right [last year] for a lot of different reasons, some professional, some family,” Gamble said, via Les Bowen of the Philadelphia Daily News. “Then this whole thing came up again. I have enough relationship with Howie, enough dialogue. Living out in Pac 12 country, I’ve got a lot of respect for Chip Kelly … I’ve been in and out of his [Oregon] building, he’s been in and out of [the 49ers’] building, I think he’s a hell of a football coach.”
“We chatted again, and you know what, it was time. I was real excited about it. Again, I wasn’t looking to go anywhere; I was in a great situation with some great people … as good as it gets in this business.”
The primary lure for Gamble was a return home. His father Harry was the Eagles president in the 1980s when the son got into the family business.
“It’s Philadelphia. That means something,” Gamble said. “It’s a little bit different, this thing. There’s not a lot of movement, not a lot of opportunity. I didn’t know when it would come up again, and I was ecstatic to come back.”
Gamble indicated that the 49ers were hesitant to let him leave a year ago, but agreed that if the opportunity presented itself again, they’d give him a chance.
Gamble interviewed for other GM jobs, but even though he lacks that title in Philadelphia, he’ll have significant input. Roseman doesn’t have the classic personnel evaluation background, and with Kelly having no NFL experience, getting Gamble on board is a solid move for the organization.