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Tannenbaum makes his mark as coaching agent


With very few General Managers being hired to be General Managers after being fired as General Managers, they need to be creative.  Former Jets G.M. Mike Tannenbaum has been as creative as anyone.

Tannenbaum has become an agent.  An agent for coaches.  As explained by Peter King of, Tannenbaum recently negotiated Steve Kerr’s contract to coach the Golden State Warriors.  Kerr surprisingly picked the Warriors over the New York Knicks.

“When I took this new job, I met Steve Kerr and he said to me, ‘I’m going to coach one day, and it’s your job to help me get ready,'” Tannenbaum told King.  “That was a great challenge.  He already had a very detailed plan, about things like leadership and coaching style and the staff and the balance between talent and character, and I helped him fine-tune his plan.  We worked for a year to get it right.  And last week, when he came out of his meeting with the Warriors, it was so rewarding to get a text from Steve.  He said, ‘They loved the plan.’  That was a sense of great fulfillment.  I was a part of the Steve Kerr team, and Steve Kerr had a very good day, so I had a very good day.  I liked that.”

He also liked not having to worry about the finite spending limits that come from a salary cap.

“It was interesting doing a big negotiation and not hearing [NFL Management Council executive] Peter Ruocco’s voice in my ear telling me to remember the salary cap,” Tannenbaum said.  “It was different.  In a non-cap situation, you can be so creative.  Whereas in football with the Jets, if I paid Nick Mangold one more dollar in a future year, I knew it would cost me trying to sign a free agent that year.”

Setting aside for now the question of whether the NFL Management Council advising teams on how to negotiate contracts constitutes collusion (that may not be a question the NFLPA sets aside), Tannenbaum eventually may have to be creative regarding the negotiation of contracts for college coaches whose earnings are undermined by the reality that players will be paid, too.  His goal remains to find the next wave of big-name coaches, college or pro.

“I want to represent the next Nick Saban you don’t know right now,” Tannebaum said.

Hopefully Tannenbaum will advise the next Nick Saban to never declare publicly he’s not going to be the coach of the team he’s about to sign a contract to coach.

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12 Responses to “Tannenbaum makes his mark as coaching agent”
  1. jtm12180 says: May 19, 2014 7:22 AM

    Tennenbaum has a heck of a resemblance to steve kerr…

  2. pftfan says: May 19, 2014 7:37 AM

    Tannenbaum was a historically bad GM. He had two really good drafts (Ferguson & Mangold in 2006, Revis & Harris in 2007) and then laid some complete eggs in the next 4 drafts (Gholston, Wilson, all the trade ups that stripped the team of any depth) plus some questionable transactions (Holmes, Mason, Tebow) that mired the team in controversy.

    I’m all for second chances, but Tannenbaum made enough screw ups for 3 tenures.

  3. sexyrexys says: May 19, 2014 7:59 AM

    Can we not use the names Tannenbaum and Mark again please. Love, a Jets fan.

  4. marooncat79 says: May 19, 2014 8:16 AM

    Hopefully, he is a better agent than GM

  5. bennyb82 says: May 19, 2014 8:24 AM

    Give him credit for the contract he got Kerr considering he has never coached.

  6. makdog21 says: May 19, 2014 8:29 AM


    Im pretty sure the Santonio Holmes trade was a good deal. His character, meh, but he was coming off the best year of his career. And they got him for a 5th rounder? You can’t blame his decline in play on him so much as, the QB play. Just a thought, Tannebaum is still a bum overall in general.

  7. walkinginthewasteland says: May 19, 2014 8:50 AM

    Tannenbaum was a horrible GM, overall. But I wouldn’t hold the Holmes trade against him. A game changer, SB MVP (albeit with some maryjane issues) for a 4th round pick? I don’t think you would find a GM in need of WRs that wouldn’t do that. If the team had someone competent to get him the ball he would have put up much better numbers for the Jets.

  8. walkinginthewasteland says: May 19, 2014 8:53 AM

    Ack, 5th round pick.

  9. pftfan says: May 19, 2014 9:35 AM

    The trade for Holmes was smart. The contract extension he gave him afterwards, not so much.

  10. cliverush says: May 19, 2014 11:31 AM

    NFL owners will slam the door in his face if he shows up with a client. He has no credibility among them for the way he operated during his tenure with the Jets.

  11. jackofnotrades says: May 19, 2014 12:19 PM

    Tannenbaum was always a very creative GM I thought…the 06-07 drafts can stack up with most teams 2-year haul..also..great wheeling & dealing…the wheels came off with the holmes and then sanchez extensions.

  12. zeke2517 says: May 20, 2014 4:17 AM

    “Hopefully Tannenbaum will advise the next Nick Saban to never declare publicly he’s not going to be the coach of the team he’s about to sign a contract to coach.”

    So what if he does? Does he owe you something?

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