It was no surprise when the Bears’ offensive and defensive coordinators received head-coaching interest elsewhere. Vic Fangio had things rolling on the defensive side of the ball, so his name became hot on the rumor mill, and he eventually landed a long-overdue head coach position. Even Mark Helfrich, whose help in pushing Mitch Trubisky toward improvement couldn’t be ignored, drew some rumored interest from the college ranks. And because the Bears’ talent level is on the rise, it was only a matter of time before members of Ryan Pace’s front office popped up on the rumor mill for jobs elsewhere.
Some names to keep an eye on during Jets GM search:
1) Joe Douglas (Eagles VP of Player Personnel)
2) Lance Newmark (Lions Director of Player Personnel)
3) Adam Peters (49ers VP of Player Personnel)
4) Champ Kelly (Bears assistant director of Player Personnel)
— Manish Mehta (@MMehtaNYDN) May 16, 2019
Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News shares some names to keep tabs on in the Jets’ search for a new general manager. Among them are a pair of names Bears fans might be familiar with.
Champ Kelly is the Bears’ Assistant Director of Player Personnel, which has him working with Josh Lucas (Director of Player Personnel) and Mark Sadowski (College Scouting Director). Prior to stepping into this position, Kelly was the team’s Director of Pro Scouting and had stints with the Broncos as a scout before moving into being the team’s Assistant Coordinator of Pro and College Scouting, then Assistant Director of Pro Personnel. Considering the number of pro and college success stories Kelly has overseen with the Bears and Broncos, it’s no wonder he has been mentioned as a candidate to replace Mark Maccagnan, who was surprisingly fired on Wednesday.
Also on the rumored short-list for the gig is Eagles Vice President of Player Personnel Joe Douglas. The Eagles are a model organization for teams that build through the draft and with the right sprinkle of free agents. Before landing in Philadelphia, Douglas was hired by Pace and worked in Chicago. Maybe it’s a coincidence that Adam Gase – the Jets’ Interim GM – worked with both Douglas and Kelly during his time in Chicago. Or maybe it isn’t. It’s quite possible that Gase saw what those two front office executives brought to the table, had a good working experience with the two, and would like to work with them again.
We’ll continue to monitor the situation, and not just because Bears-related candidates are involved in the search. But also because you never really know what’s going to happen with the Jets until it actually happens. They’re a wild-card in a league that could have a surprise at any given turn.