Plenty of G.M. jobs could open up after the season, too


It’s a given that plenty of coaching jobs will become available within the next two weeks. It’s also likely that several G.M. vacancies will arise.

Already, the Lions have an opening, and they’ll surely move quickly to fill it — especially if the new G.M. will be determining as his first order of business whether to keep coach Jim Caldwell. If Caldwell will be replaced, the Lions need to enter the coaching market before all of the best candidates are claimed.

Here’s a look at the other potential hot spots where General Managers may get the specific news that their services are no longer needed.

Buffalo: A disconnect has lingered throughout the season between G.M. Doug Whaley and coach Rex Ryan. Since Ryan has the bigger buyout, he becomes more likely to survive any potential face off. While Ryan likely hasn’t done enough to secure final say with a G.M.-in-name-only to do Rex’s bidding, the Bills need someone who can identify players who will mesh with the systems Ryan wants to use. The situation becomes problematic for Rex if ownership decides to hire a G.M. who will supervise (and potentially hope to replace) the head coach.

Miami: Dennis Hickey has become a forgotten man with the Dolphins, and the thinking is that he has lost all of his power to Mike Tannenbaum. Look for Tannenbaum to replace Hickey — possibly by pulling an Elway and becoming the G.M. himself.

Cleveland: At a time when many think owner Jimmy Haslam plans to hit the reset button, there’s a chance Ray Farmer survives. Some believe Haslam could hire an executive to oversee the football operations, which would make Farmer that person’s puppet instead of what Farmer possibly has been the last two years: Haslam’s puppet.

Indianapolis: It’s becoming more and more likely that coach Chuck Pagano will be gone. Some think G.M. Ryan Grigson definitely will join Pagano as former Colts employees, but others believe Grigson has sufficiently ingratiated himself to the Irsay family that he’ll stay. The final answer could depend on the next head coach; if Jim Irsay goes after a big-name coach, that big-name coach may not want Grigson getting in the way of the big-name coach’s desire to control the football operation.

Houston: When the team was struggled, G.M. Rick Smith was catching plenty of flak for it. Now that a playoff berth is within grasp, he’s most likely safe. Still, owner Bob McNair should give final say over the roster to Smith or coach Bill O’Brien.

Tennessee: With a coaching vacancy already in existence, the Titans could clear out G.M. Ruston Webster for the same reasons the Colts may fire Ryan Grigson. To attract the kind of coach who could turn the team around, the Titans may need to clear the decks and let the coach rebuild the front office from scratch.

San Diego: G.M. Tom Telesco quietly received a contract extension before the season started. Which suggests that he’s safe.

Philadelphia: Chip Kelly the head coach has struggled this season due in large part to the misadventures of Chip Kelly the de facto G.M. Would owner Jeffrey Lurie install someone to handle the personnel side of the business for Chip? Would Chip welcome that? Could the Eagles find someone who would work with Chip, given last year’s early-offseason wrestling match with Howie Roseman?

New York Giants: With the Giants now out of the playoffs, ownership can begin to decide on whether to changes the coach and/or the General Manager. The roster currently isn’t in very good shape, and that falls on the G.M. more than the coach.

Atlanta: Last year’s uncertainty surrounding G.M. Thomas Dimitroff has created speculation that he could be in trouble, if/when the Falcons fail to get back to the postseason. But owner Arthur Blank seems to be very fond of Dimitroff — and owner Dan Quinn has said publicly (and presumably privately) that he wants to keep working with Dimitroff.

New Orleans: G.M. Mickey Loomis is sufficiently entrenched in the basketball team owned by Tom Benson to be inherently safe. The question becomes whether Loomis elevates to a higher level in the organization, with a new G.M. hired beneath Loomis.

St. Louis: Coach Jeff Fisher is reportedly safe. Is that same statement true for G.M. Les Snead? Some think that the team will need to do something to address another season of failed expectations. Still, Fisher has shown no indication to move on from Snead.

San Francisco: The news that G.M. Trent Baalke has been coaching defensive backs prompted speculation that coach Jim Tomsula is in trouble. It also could be a sign that Baalke is feeling the heat, and that he’s doing whatever he has to do to improve the team. Regardless, the surprise decision to demote Paraag Marathe has created a sense that anything can happen once the season ends. Something needs to happen, given the suddenly sparse attendance in Santa Clara.

59 responses to “Plenty of G.M. jobs could open up after the season, too

  1. Maybe it’s time for the Packers to nudge Ted Thompson towards retirement and promote Elliott Wolf. He would actually make a trade, and value team speed especially at the WR and TE positions.

  2. As a Bills fan, and entertaining the what-if firing of Doug Whaley, I would hope the new GM would immediately fire Rex Ryan.
    But that’s just me.

  3. Loomis is a bean-counter. He merely facilitates the personnel moves Payton wants to make. Someone should insist Payton gives up personnel power or be gone because his drafts in recent years have been horrible (see drafting guard Andrus Peat, who can’t play dead in a western, 13th overall when he had clear defensive needs), and his free-agent moves have been worse.

    Jeff Ireland is in the front office, too, and we can only hope he doesn’t become GM. I’m sure it was his influence that led to the acquisition of LB Dannell Ellerbe, who is a very good player but who is also made of glass and has played about three games this year after missing all of last year in Miami.

  4. “…others believe Grigson has sufficiently ingratiated himself to the Irsay family that he’ll stay.”

    Indy fans, so sorry. Back during my youth my Bosox had a pair of guys in the front office, both of whom were ostensibly there for personnel decisions. One, Dick O’Connell, was a legitimate baseball guy: he oversaw a farm system that produced HOF’ers like Fisk and Rice and he made transactions that brought guys like Tiant and Elston Howard to the Sox in ’67 and ’74 for those seasons’ pennants.

    The other guy was a fellow named Haywood Sullivan. He drank with Mr. Yawkey and “ingratiated” himself with Jean, Yawkey’s widow.

    After Mr. Yawkey’s death, former Sporting News “Executive of the Year” O’Connell gets the sack and Haywood Sullivan is promoted. Among Sullivan’s accomplishments was “forgetting” to mail Carleton Fisk’s contract offer prior to a free agency deadline (Pudge ended his playing career as a White Sox), promoting his son Mark (coincidentally a catcher) through the farm system at a rate far in excess of the kid’s aptitude and ensuring that the Sox would be irrelevant (except for ’78 – #&%@&#%@*!) until 1986.

  5. Bills hire Pollian who will be the Football “Czar”, he will come in as a non vested party, act as the interim GM for one possibly two years. Then simply be an advisor.

    Bill Pollian knows football better than most people could ever hope to learn in their lifetime. Bill simply evaluates football.

    Let’s hope for Buffalo’s sanity!

  6. I’m glad fellow Giants fans are starting to wake up and notice the mess Reese has created. The 09,10,11, and 12 drafts have finally caught up to us and now we have mediocre talent in a lot of spots, especially with our LB’s and Safeties, sprinkled with a couple of stars. Unfortunately I don’t think the owners will get rid of him but I hope I’m wrong. It’s easy to pick well in the 1st round but the great GMs know how to
    see the real talent in the later rounds and Reese has missed miserably way too many times.

  7. Everyone close to the Giant situation is already saying both Reese and Coughlin are safe and that Reese is definitely entrenched to return of the two if there was any change. Why, I have no idea. The thinking on Coughlin is that they don’t want to reset on Eli Manning so close to the end of his career and that his team hasn’t quit on him. However, there were a lot of in game coaching failures this year, the latest being that debacle with Beckham last week.

  8. stoneydog1000 says:
    Dec 27, 2015 9:22 AM

    Not in Cincinnati.

    Maybe they should. Vegas has the Odds at 900 to 1 that the Bengals will lose as soon as they get in the Playoffs (again).

  9. As a Patriots fan, I hope Nick Caserio is not “in play” as a replacement for any of the soon to be fired GMs. The job he and his staff have done in turning a defense, once seen as a weakness, to what it is today, I hope he stays put.

  10. The GM that Buffalo brings in won’t matter as long as Rex is the coach. He is the most overrated coach in the league. He took a stout D, and let it shrivel to nothing. Same thing he did with the Jets.

    How is that playoff run going?

  11. I’d fire:

    Loomis (the Saints cap has been badly mismanaged for years)

    Ryan Grigson (other than being handed Andrew Luck whats he done in 4 years? OK – he got lucky on TY Hilton. Offset that with the stupid Trent Richardson trade).

    Why fire Doug Whaley – he has drafted good players, even if he over paid for Sammy Watkins. Fire Rex Ryan instead.

  12. Everyone talks about how few elite-level quarterbacks there are (and they are right) but there’s an equally sparse amount of high-quality GMs out there.

    Fans of stable, successful franchises should say a prayer of thanks.

  13. Buffalo should just keep Whaley if they aren’t going to fire Rex, too. Remember how nobody wanted to work with Rex in New York and they ended up with Idzik? That’s going to be a dysfunctional franchise if Rex and Whaley can’t kiss and make up or both hit the road.

    And the Giants should fire Reese AND Coughlin. The fact that Coughlin didn’t pull Beckham aside and sit him down for a bit while things were getting ridiculous on the field vs the panthers is inexcusable, and ultimately tells me he has very little control over these guys. It’s time for the guy to just retire.

  14. Snead should stay. You can’t even compare the roster he inherited to the one he has now. Talent isn’t the issue. Coaching is the issue. That’s not Snead’s fault.

  15. I thought Dan Quinn was the coach, not a co-owner (as stated in the article).

    And as a fan of another NFC West team, it’s heartening to read that Fisher will be back for the Rams.

  16. Whaley is also being said to be safe. Why people are saying he should be fired, I don’t know either. He blundered on Manuel, but technically, wasn’t that a Buddy Hicks pick? His rookie class this year has been one of the top ones in the league. Most of everything that happened to them this year falls on Rex’s defense being mediocre and them still needing a better QB, even though he played well enough to get them into the playoffs had the defense held their end of the bargain up.

  17. “Jerrah! Yer fired!”

    Jerrah! You can’t fire me, Jerrah! I’m Jerrah!”

    “No, I’M Jerrah, Jerrah! Yer fired, Jerrah!”


  18. While the NYG roster is a mess, Coughlin signed his exit papers last week by acknowledging he was “unaware”
    of Beckham’s antics? Really? You kept getting penalized but didn’t know why. If the Giants games were 58 minutes long instead of 60, they’d have 10+ wins. That’s the coach.

    And Dan Quinn, owner?

  19. Alright already, the Quinn thing was a typo. I think it’s time to clean house in NYG. I agree that Coughlin didn’t have the nads to pull Beckham and it’s also evident he has no control over McAdoo’s terrible porn mustache either. Farmer should go and Pettine should stay. Ryan needs a real DC who will run their own defense instead of Thurman who’s really just a Ryan lackey.

  20. Sadly, as Cowboys fans, we’ll never see a change in the GM’s office for the franchise that needs it the most. C’mon grim reaper, you’re our only hope!!

  21. Doug Whaley isn’t going anywhere. Jason La Canfora is literally the only reporter tO say he’s on the way out, while anyone else who’s weighed in on it says he’s likely safe. But for some reason you’re going with La Canfora’s report. There’s no issues between Rex and Whaley, if there’s any it’s said to be with Roman and Whaley. La Canfora is wrong on literally every Bills story and is a huge Doug Marrone fan and seems to be more interested in spinning the Bills to look like a clown show rather than reporting facts.

  22. And yet again….Teflon Ozzie Newsome gets a pass. He is living on his reputation from long ago, and has been the Wizard of Nothing for at least the past 5-7 years.

  23. The nepotism in Houston is so strong that Rick Smith could murder a family of five and McNair wouldn’t even consider firing him.

    His job was never on the line for a 2-14 season, for Christ’s sake. 2-14!

    McNair is -happy- with the terrible drafting and .500 at best seasons. Houston is just successful enough to be doomed to Eternal Terrible GM status, but not enough to actually be any good.

  24. Baalke isn’t going anywhere. The Yorks are on cloud nine after getting the new stadium built. According to them, this has been their most successful season by far. The Colts aren’t getting rid of Grigson. They won 36 games over the prior three years after starting from scratch. The coaching staff is a complete mess. Every available coach will list the Colts as their number one desire, which is a testament to the talent that Grigson has assembled. I think they’ll sign Grigson to a long term deal. Jim Irsay is actually one of the best owners in pro sports and his team has been one of the most successful over the years. This season was a fluke.

  25. Grigson should be selling hot dogs or Dr Pepper. How he ever got to the GM position is beyond me.

  26. Jerry Reese should stay.

    It’s not right that a guy who’s never hired a head coach be fired.

    Also, where’s Trent Baalke? His drafts have been way worse than Reese’s?

    It’s not Reese’s fault that Will Beatty is hurt and Jason Pierre-Paul blew up his own hand. Plus, if ownership doesn’t let him spend, it’s not Reese’s fault.

  27. Also, Ozzie Newsome. How come he’s not on the list but Jerry Reese is? Newsome hasn’t drafted a Pro Bowler since 2008. How is Reese bad?

    Newsome has a worse defensive backfield and wide receiver corps.

    He overpaid Flacco.

    Plus, John Schneider has missed on more draft picks like James Carpenter, Christine Michael, Robert Turbin and made two bad trades with Jimmy Graham and Percy Harvin.

    If Schneider can stay, so can Reese.

  28. Tannebaum can’t be the GM without opening the door for the NFL to punish them for violating the Rooney Rule when Tannenbaum was hired. Of course this is the Dolphins making the decision so nothing would surprise me.

  29. – Ozzie Newsome has to be judged not by one season but by his entirety. The Ravens have lost a lot: Suggs, Lewis, Ed Reed, Ray Rice, and relied on Steve Smith for offense. Breshad Perriman being out all year really hurt. While he needs to be criticized by not providing fixtures in the holes left by all these players, they were playoff bound last year and this is one bad season….I just don’t think Newsome has done enough bad things long enough to warrant an ousting… Yet. He may step down and head to the University of Alabama anyhow as Alabama will be hiring a new AD soon. Maybe that works out best for both parties.

  30. Yeah, the Quinn thing is a typo so FIX IT when called out on it. How many other major “typos” are there in these writngs thay skew reality either accidentally or on purpose even. Is it too hard to correct such a glaring mistake? I know that this comment here will be deleted within minutes! Any integrity here? “Let’s just leave our little ‘mistake’ out there and see what happens”

  31. Tannenbaum will absolutely force himself in there. What a snake that bum is. Why would Miami allow this bozo to make decisions when he did nothing worth note in NY. I guess anyone is better than Jeff Ireland however.

    All I know is I wouldn’t trade my GM David Caldwell for anyone. Love what he has done with Jaguars roster. Can’t wait to see Dante Fowler and hopefully Hargreaves or Ramsey playinh on D next year. God knows this defense needs the help.

  32. The Lions do need to replace Caldwell. He makes too many bad decisions, too many mistakes. I’m sure that this will be the new GM’s first course of action.

  33. For Snead to get fired Enos Stanley Kroenke would have to know who he is. Enos has been to Rams Park only once in the 4 years he has owned the team. I doubt he even knows what the role of a GM in football really does.

  34. The Dolphins should fire Mike Tannenbaum. He is screwing the Dolphins just like he screwed the Jets with Mark Sanchez. He way overpaid for Ndamukong Suh. Tannenbaum is a numbers guy. He is horrible at football decisions. How Stephen Ross hired this guy, I have no freakin’ idea. As long as Mike Tannenbaum stays as VP of Football Ops, the Dolphins will continue to be screwed. This team is way overdue for an organizational enema. They absolutely need to clean house of EVERYONE, and Tannenbaum needs to be the first to be fired and shown out the door!

  35. I think GM Grigson should be fired. The coach is not running the team, he has to take orders from Grigson, if he want a player to play he will play even though they don’t need him in. I think Pagano did great job with what he has and you have to give him the benefit of the doubt. If Grigson was not calling the plays, maybe Colts could have won more games.

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