So why did the Chiefs not give director of pro personnel Chris Ballard permission to interview for the G.M. job in Tampa Bay? Because Ballard didn’t want the G.M. job in Tampa Bay.
The Chiefs have informed PFT that Ballard and his family decided to remain in Kansas City. The team explained that, while Ballard has great affection and respect for new Buccaneers coach Lovie Smith, Ballard has a young family, he has moved multiple times in recent years, and he is happy working with coach Andy Reid, G.M. John Dorsey, and owner Clark Hunt.
And so the Chiefs denied the request to interview Ballard, at Ballard’s request.
It nevertheless appears that the Chiefs could have blocked the move, unless Ballard is working in the final year of his contract. Despite a belief in some league circles that promotions to General Manager no longer can be blocked if the G.M. won’t have control over the roster, the rules still define General Manager as “an individual who has (1) the authority over all personnel decisions related to the signing of free agents, the selection of players in the College Draft, trades, terminations, and related decisions, and (2) the responsibility for coordinating other football activities with the Head Coach.”
For front-office employees in the final year of their contracts, the move possibly can be delayed but not stopped. For front-office employees with more than a year left on their contracts, the move can be blocked unless the promotion entails authority over personnel.
While that Chiefs apparently didn’t use that power in rejecting Tampa’s request to interview Ballard, other teams could — if reports that Smith has control over the roster are accurate.
Smith, in a recent appearance on PFT Live, declined to comment on whether he has power over the roster. He also declined to identify the candidates, which also reportedly include Falcons director of player personnel Lionel Vital and Giants V.P. of player evaluation Marc Ross.