While the initial reaction to yesterday’s Browns front office shake-up was that it was another sign of organizational dysfunction, there’s at least the possibility that they may have made the right move.
In promoting Ray Farmer to General Manager, the Browns have a respected young personnel man in place, and those who know him think he has the makings of a good boss.
Rams G.M. Les Snead, who hired Farmer as a scout in Atlanta, said he thinks Farmer’s ready to take the next step.
“Hiring Ray is one of the easiest and best decisions I’ve ever made,” Snead said, via Tom Reed of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “He is a people person who genuinely wants to build a united team on the field and inside the building.
“He knows this requires asking inquisitive, but often hard, questions as well as listening to the answers to those questions.”
Building a consensus will be helpful, as the Browns were splintered by the end of the Joe Banner/Mike Lombardi run, and Farmer was given a head coach in Mike Pettine that he wasn’t involved in interviewing.
Another executive who didn’t want his name used said Farmer’s familiarity with the team’s personnel will also be a plus.
“Ray is absolutely ready for this,” the executive said. “You can say, ‘Well, he’s never run a draft before,’ but everyone has to do it for the first time, right? It’s not like he hasn’t been in war rooms in years past. He was in there last year with Cleveland and was in there in years past with Kansas City.
“By promoting him, the Browns also are giving themselves some continuity. He is familiar with the scouts, he’s done his own scouting and knows how to evaluate talent.”
If he can find a quarterback, there’s a stable core of personnel on hand, particularly on defense. But as Browns fans well know, finding an answer at quarterback has eluded them for generations.