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Old 01-05-2008, 08:03 PM    (permalink
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If the Eagles' drafts are any indication, I think the odds of McFadden go down exponentially with Heckert, while the odds of taking Jake Long increase.

I like Long. I'd still prefer McFadden though.
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Old 01-07-2008, 01:59 PM    (permalink
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TLANTA -- Even as the Atlanta Falcons continued their parallel searches for a new general manager and head coach, there were indications that, at least on one of those tracks, owner Arthur Blank could be narrowing his focus. Philadelphia Eagles general manager Tom Heckert is scheduled to interview Monday with team officials and there is a strong sense in league circles that the veteran talent scout will go into the session as the front-runner for the job. Heckert, 40, has been highly recommended by Eagles' owner Jeff Lurie and he will be the third known candidate to meet with Blank and team president Rich McKay about the position. While the potential move for Heckert looks like a lateral one on the surface, it clearly represents upward mobility, since he would oversee the Falcons' football operation if he lands the job. Heckert has the general manager title in Philadelphia, but it is head coach Andy Reid who holds so-called "final say authority" on personnel matters. In seven seasons with the Eagles' organization, Heckert has engineered very productive drafts, and has built an impressive track record as a talent evaluator. Philadelphia promoted him to general manager in 2006, when the Minnesota Vikings pursued him for the same position. Before joining the Eagles in 2001, Heckert worked in the Miami Dolphins' personnel department for 10 years. His father was also a longtime Dolphins personnel official. In advance of the meeting with Heckert, the Falcons postponed at least one scheduled interview that was to have taken place over the weekend with a candidate from an AFC franchise, ESPN.com has learned. The Falcons recently sought and were granted permission to meet with New York Giants vice president of player evaluation Chris Mara. It is not known, however, if Mara has agreed to be interviewed. Blank and McKay last Wednesday interviewed a pair of Green Bay scouting officials, director of pro personnel Reggie McKenzie and personnel analyst John Schneider, for the general manager position. The two were set to meet with Indianapolis vice president of football operations Chris Polian last Thursday about the GM job, but he opted to remove himself from consideration. On the coaching front, Falcons officials have interviewed three candidates: Dallas assistant head coach Tony Sparano, Cowboys offensive coordinator Jason Garrett, and Indianapolis assistant head coach Jim Caldwell. Former Baltimore defensive coordinator Rex Ryan, who is also a candidate for the NFL's other two existing vacancies, with the Ravens and Miami Dolphins, is to meet with the Falcons this week. League sources said that the Falcons were pleased with all of the candidates for the head coach spot but that Caldwell is believed to have been particularly impressive. Atlanta is expected to interview several more head coach candidates and one of them could be Tennessee defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz. The Titans' loss at San Diego in a Sunday wild card game ends their season and means that Schwartz is now available for such a meeting.
http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/s...e=NFLHeadlines

I was a big fan of Jim Caldwell last year, but unfortunately they didn't hire him. Peyton Manning has given rave reviews about Caldwell's impact on their team.
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Old 01-07-2008, 02:10 PM    (permalink
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Thoughts if it's true Blank wants to hire a GM ... who won't clean house? I don't understand that at all, if it's true. I am not a fan of Blank at all, as my posts have no doubt indicated, I think his meddlesome hands in the decision-making have increasingly poisoned this franchise.

Keeping McKay as Team President? Using nine guys and IQ tests in a head coach search? Interviewing coaches before hiring the GM? This guy is an idiot imo. McKay took the hit for Petrino, but Blank is the problem in Atlanta I have thought and still think.

Hopefully it works out for you guys, Falcons fans.
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Old 01-08-2008, 04:15 AM    (permalink
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Thoughts if it's true Blank wants to hire a GM ... who won't clean house? I don't understand that at all, if it's true. I am not a fan of Blank at all, as my posts have no doubt indicated, I think his meddlesome hands in the decision-making have increasingly poisoned this franchise.

Keeping McKay as Team President? Using nine guys and IQ tests in a head coach search? Interviewing coaches before hiring the GM? This guy is an idiot imo. McKay took the hit for Petrino, but Blank is the problem in Atlanta I have thought and still think.

Hopefully it works out for you guys, Falcons fans.
The search is not that absurd. Even assuming that all the rumours are true:

1. Obviously he has to interview coaches before hiring the GM. As I'm sure you know, league rules prevent coaches from interviewing while their team is in the playoffs. Accordingly, the only opportunity to have a first interview with Sparano, Garrett, Caldwell etc was last week. I am sure that a GM will be hired before the HC, and that the HC will not be hired without the GM's approval. Those who interviewed before the GM arrives may well be re-interviewed. That's fairly normal practice in any senior employment.

If Blank actually hires an HC before a GM, then you can call him an idiot. But I strongly doubt that will happen.

2. Using 9 guys in a head coach search is not idiotic. It might be somewhat over the top, but I've regularly been interviewed by panels of 5, 6 or 7 people, and those jobs were not as senior as an NFL HC. There won't be 9 decision-makers, but there will be 9 different reactions for the decision-makers to gauge. It's standard procedure in most senior employment interviews. Might it ruffle a few feathers? Perhaps, but I don't think you can call it idiotic.

3. IQ tests? Well, again, that's fairly standard, though I don't think they have much to do with football. It may well be that the hack journalist actually means psychometric testing generally, which is far more reasonable. Again, it might ruffle a few feathers, but you never know, it might have raised a few flags for some of Blank and McKay's worse decisions: Vick, Mora and Petrino.

4. As for a new GM not being allowed to clean house, that's just absurd. But I'd be interested to see any reliable indication that Blank has made that a requirement for his new GM.
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Old 01-08-2008, 04:17 AM    (permalink
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On that point, I'd expect a new GM to be in place by the end of the week. I'm hoping for Heckert. I'd be surprised if Blank rejected his impressive record and, most importantly, greater experience as GM than any other candidate.
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Old 01-08-2008, 10:09 AM    (permalink
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I am incredibly disappointed that the Eagles haven't promoted Heckert to running the full football operations in an effort to keep him in the fold. He has done a superior job finding talent and evaluating players. Sure, there have been some misses, but there is a ton of young talent out there. Much of that credit belongs to Heckert. If the Falcons make this hire, it will be an inspired choice. It will suck for me, but I'm happy for TH.
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Old 01-08-2008, 11:06 AM    (permalink
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I'd support a Caldwell and Heckert combo.
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Old 01-08-2008, 11:15 AM    (permalink
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For some reason, I don't see Heckert necessarily going to get Caldwell. The GM will pick the coach, probably with some imput from the owner. Heckert has old school Dolphins ties (Jimmy Johnson tree) and Andy Reid ties. You could be looking at a retread from that camp or one of Andy Reid's guys. Maybe a young coordinator like Steve Spagnuolo (just an example). He could also reach out and go get a Steve Mariucci.

Don't forget that Atlanta is still built as a WCO team, just without a solid QB situation. They could reinstall a WCO under the right guy.
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Old 01-08-2008, 01:59 PM    (permalink
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Damn Gibbs. That puts us one further down the pecking list for a new HC.
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Old 01-08-2008, 02:20 PM    (permalink
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I wouldn't go that far. The Redskins are a mess in terms of cap room and such. A HC has to go into that situation knowing that the owner controls the personnel and the GM has no knowledge of anything. It is not a favorable situation.
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Old 01-08-2008, 04:05 PM    (permalink
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I wouldn't go that far. The Redskins are a mess in terms of cap room and such. A HC has to go into that situation knowing that the owner controls the personnel and the GM has no knowledge of anything. It is not a favorable situation.
I don't really understand why people think Washington is a great job. Do they have nine draft picks, including the 3rd-5th pick in the draft and two 2nd round picks? Do they actually have *gasp* cap space?
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Old 01-08-2008, 04:51 PM    (permalink
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The Redskins are currently $20mm over the projected cap. They will have to cut several veterans and restructure salaries just to break even. They have 6 draft picks, but their personnel department seems to value veterans more than rookies.

Combine the cap mess with the meddling owner and the mediocre "GM" and the aging roster and the absolute mess with the money owed to the coaching staf, and you have a terrible quagmire. Washington is not a quick fix job. They made the playoffs this year, but the team is not on solid footing.
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Old 01-08-2008, 05:05 PM    (permalink
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For some reason, I don't see Heckert necessarily going to get Caldwell. The GM will pick the coach, probably with some imput from the owner. Heckert has old school Dolphins ties (Jimmy Johnson tree) and Andy Reid ties. You could be looking at a retread from that camp or one of Andy Reid's guys. Maybe a young coordinator like Steve Spagnuolo (just an example). He could also reach out and go get a Steve Mariucci.

Don't forget that Atlanta is still built as a WCO team, just without a solid QB situation. They could reinstall a WCO under the right guy.
damn it. a WCO would mean MAtt Ryan. that or a trade up for Brian Brohm (which I would like.) and JAke Long. that's cool though cause it would put Norwood into a Bryan Westbrook role.
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Old 01-08-2008, 05:11 PM    (permalink
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I hate Matt Ryan as an NFL QB. He is not right for any offense. Something just seems off about him to me. He has all the tools and should be incredible, but it doesn't seem right. If Atlanta takes him, they will have a problem. They are better off building their OLine and running the ball at this point than they are getting a QB this year. Build your OLine and running game, see if Chris Redmond can take care of things for a year, then see what comes out next year. Maybe a second or third round QB can take care of business.


Take Jake Long, build your OLine, then move from there.
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Old 01-08-2008, 05:38 PM    (permalink
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I agree with that sentiment completely. The only QBs I want from this draft are Brian Brohm and Joe Flacco. Everyone else seems very iffy. What would we do if Long and McFadden and Dorsey are all gone though, and we are unable to trade down?
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Old 01-08-2008, 06:44 PM    (permalink
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damn it. a WCO would mean MAtt Ryan. that or a trade up for Brian Brohm (which I would like.) and JAke Long. that's cool though cause it would put Norwood into a Bryan Westbrook role.

Isn't Brohm the big WCO guy?
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Old 01-08-2008, 07:32 PM    (permalink
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For some reason, I don't see Heckert necessarily going to get Caldwell. The GM will pick the coach, probably with some imput from the owner. Heckert has old school Dolphins ties (Jimmy Johnson tree) and Andy Reid ties. You could be looking at a retread from that camp or one of Andy Reid's guys. Maybe a young coordinator like Steve Spagnuolo (just an example). He could also reach out and go get a Steve Mariucci.

Don't forget that Atlanta is still built as a WCO team, just without a solid QB situation. They could reinstall a WCO under the right guy.
I do not like any of those head coach options. Rex Ryan, Mike Singletary, and Jim Caldwell are my top guys.
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Old 01-08-2008, 08:29 PM    (permalink
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initially i really wanted singletary or ryan for their defensive prowess but the nfl is quickly evolving into a league where offense wins. sure you cant have a horrible defense but keep your defense off the field while your offense scores and you have a legitimate shot at the championship. im liking caldwell.
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Old 01-08-2008, 08:32 PM    (permalink
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if you guys take Spags from us I'd flip. He's a great mind who would turn your good D into a dominant one.
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:30 AM    (permalink
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Carroll?

Interesting. Can't see it happening, but I've got to admit that he has a history of winning.

Incidentally, the fact that the Falcons have requested an interview with Spagnuolo, a former associate of Heckert, just after interviewing Heckert, suggests to me:

1. Heckert's presentation included Spag as a prominent candidate;
2. Heckert is the front-runner for GM.

I'd not be unhappy with that, depending on the OC. Given the Eagles background of Heckert and Spag, we might very well see a WCO guy. On the one hand, that brings back bad memories. On the other, I think Redman could be fairly proficient in that system, and it widens our options for draftable QBs. It makes Flacco and his ultra-quick release even more appealing.
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Old 01-09-2008, 08:17 AM    (permalink
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http://life.atlantafalcons.com/Forum...3249-45-1.aspx

Have a read of those two articles. Makes Spag look like a very attractive target, despite the limited experience co-ordinating experience. Jim Johnson is about as good a tutor as you can get, both technically and motivationally, and Reid was probably a good demonstration (until the past year or so) of how a HC should behave.
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Old 01-09-2008, 09:16 AM    (permalink
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I am a huge Spagnuolo fan. He is going to be a very good coach, and his players love him. Trust me, he would be a good hire, even if he's about a year away from being something special.

If you hire Heckert and get Spagnuolo, that would be an excellent team to start rebuilding. I would definitely appreciate the emphasis on the defense and the intensity of Spags. You will grow to love him.
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Old 01-09-2008, 09:30 AM    (permalink
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Are any of the Eagles offensive assistants possible OC candidates? I've heard that the QB coach might be, but his resume doesn't really seem strong enough to be an OC for a defensive minded HC.
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Old 01-09-2008, 09:43 AM    (permalink
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The NFL is all about ability and potential on the coaching lines these days. Teams don't want to overpay for existing talent, but they want motivators and innovators. They want guys who can grow. Youth is the new trend. Get the guy with a huge amount of growth potential, who you can get on the cheap now, then build off it. Look at guys like Jason Garrett and Sean Payton, even Andy Reid. If you can find gems like that early, you can really go places.
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Old 01-09-2008, 11:07 AM    (permalink
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I might be interested in Carroll.
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