Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Pegging down the new crop of rumors about the San Diego Chargers' search for a General Manager to replace A.J. Smith.
Well, it appears we're just hours (or days!) away from the San Diego Chargers announcing who the next General Manager of the team will be. This according to Kevin Acee, who wrote about it all here. Here are some of the highlights:
The Chargers have talked to almost everyone they believe they need to or will get a chance to talk to, and their search for a new general manager is almost certainly down to two men.
Jimmy Raye, the Chargers' Director of Player Personnel, or Tom Telesco, the Indianapolis Colts' Vice President of Football Operations, will likely be named as A.J. Smith's successor in "a day or two," according to a team source.
The Chargers brass - consisting of president Dean Spanos and his son, John, the team's director of college scouting, vice president Ed McGuire and consultant Ron Wolf -- hit the road on Thursday and returned to San Diego on Sunday. On the trip, they interviewed Telesco and New York Giants Director of College Scouting Marc Ross.
I guess Marc Ross wasn't very impressive. Maybe all of those fantastic draft picks for the Giants were just dumb luck? Probably. Nobody is that good. Except Jimmy Raye.
The Chargers are just today preparing their letters to officially request permission to speak to potential head coaching candidates who are currently employed by other NFL teams.
At or near the top of that list, regardless of whether Telesco is the new GM, is Colts offensive coordinator Bruce Arians. The Chargers had not previously inquired about Arians or other candidates because they wanted to get their GM in place first.
Discussions with the GM candidates revealed their list of possible head coaches largely overlapped and that whoever the GM is, the head coach candidates will be the "same guys."
So, their reason for not interviewing Head Coaches earlier turned out to be a non-factor because everyone wants the 60 year old guy with no Head Coaching experience to come in and fix this team quickly? Got it.
One team source said yesterday that the Chargers are "ready for a change" with the new head coach they hire, further indicating that person will be a departure from both Norv Turner and Marty Schottenheimer in terms of hiring someone who has not already been a head coach multiple times.
In Bruce Arians, they get a guy that has never been a Head Coach despite being an Offensive Coordinator in the NFL for nine years (By comparison, Chuck Pagano was a Defensive Coordinator for one season before getting a Head Coaching job). Boy, the rest of the NFL has really missed the boat on this guy. Kinda like when everyone thought that Norv Turner guy wasn't very....WHOA WHOA WHOA.....I almost did something really bad right there.
The Chargers did receive permission to speak with three more candidates and have interviews still scheduled with two of them. But Raye has always been viewed as a frontrunner, and Telesco was termed by one source as "very impressive."
Even more impressive might be getting the Owner to shell out money to bring in a special consultant, then use his private jet to fly around to different U.S. cities to wine and dine other candidates, and end the search by saying "We liked this guy that we had in-house all along!"
"There are a lot of moving parts," the source said.
This is the very last line of Acee's story. This is one of those "I'm going to put this in there in case everything goes opposite of the way that I've been insinuating that it's going to go" lines. There might be a source and there might not, but having this as the last line of your story is like me ending every one of my predictions with "This might happen or it might not." That way, I'm covered from looking like a complete buffoon.
All in all, I'm sick of the rumors and insinuations. They're being handled in ludicrous ways. It might be Jimmy Raye or it might not be. They might have settled on two finalists, but they also have more interviews scheduled. None of this makes any sense, and while some are quick to say "This is the Chargers, of course the GM search won't make any sense," I have a little more faith in the process itself.
That being said, if the Chargers end up with Jimmy Raye as their General Manager and Bruce Arians as their Head Coach, I will jump head first into the water and become a shark myself. I'll feed on the mistakes of the organization and the disappointment it causes me. I will start a crusade that will ring out to the heavens with it's focus and ferocity, and Chargers Park will come to fear me and my mighty pen. This might happen or it might not.