The bizarre bashing of Kyler Murray‘s lack of preparation for Combine interviews, coupled with the eventual revelation that former NFL G.M. Charley Casserly gets paid to prepare players for Combine interviews, has placed Casserly generally on the unofficial PFT pay-no-mind list. But he recently said some things about the Jets G.M. job that merit presentation and discussion, because Casserly served as a consultant in 2015, when the Jets hired Casserly friend/protégé Mike Maccagnan.
In an interview with Matt Stypulkoski of NJ.com, Casserly tried his best to talk up the work of the guy Casserly was paid to recommend to ownership, pointing out how bad the roster was in 2015 and how much better it is now. (It’s abundantly clear that Casserly isn’t a Geno Smith guy — apparently, like Murray, Smith also isn’t a former Casserly client.)
If Casserly is hired again by the Jets to consult in the G.M. search (i.e., pick the next G.M. from his roster of friends and former colleagues), Casserly apparently won’t be recommending Peyton Manning.
In response to the inquiry of what he thinks of the idea of Manning as G.M. of the Jets, Casserly said, “My feeling is there’s plenty of qualified candidates out there that are working with clubs.”
“And he would not be one of them?” Casserly was asked.
“That’s my quote,” Casserly replied.
Casserly overlooks the reality that this isn’t a hire that can be made in a vacuum. A clean-slate G.M. would arrive with a list in his front pocket of the names of coaches he’d like to hire, when the first opportunity to hire a coach arises. And that would lead to even more dysfunction as G.M. and coach struggle for power.
On the other hand, a hand-picked Gase G.M. could be excessively beholden to the coach, deferring to him on matters of personnel even if the G.M. arrives with contractual final say.
Manning could be the perfect compromise, a friend of Gase’s who has worked well with him in the past and, presumably, would work well with him in the future. Gase has displayed during his short time as a coach a degree of intensity and irritation that not everyone can handle. Manning can handle it, because Manning is likely one of the few who could channel Gase’s burning desire to win in the right direction.
Also, let’s not overlook the basic reality that people tend to have different approaches when interacting with others. And Gase presumably exhibits to Manning a degree of deference that Gase may not grant to many others.
That makes it an ideal arrangement, if the Jets can pull it off. So take the advice from this unpaid consultant (the Jets are getting their money’s worth), spend the money to get Peyton Manning, if he’s truly ready to make the plunge back into football.