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New York Jets General Manager Search: No Such Thing As a Sure Thing

Doug Pensinger

You might be tempted to look at candidates like Marc Ross, Tom Gamble, and Dave Caldwell and think the Jets can't lose. No matter what they are going to get a great general manager. Don't think that. The Jets need to be extremely discerning as they enter the process of finding a general manager. I can almost promise you they will not all succeed if given the chance to be a general manager. There is a strong chance none of them will be a quality general manager.

If you ever get a chance, go to a search engine and look at the hot general manager candidates in years past. You will see a lot of qualified, highly touted candidates who ended up flopping. You will find a few more who were average, which is not what you want. There are only a handful of franchises contending for a championship on a consistent basis.

Think about it. No matter where you work, you come across people who are great at their job. They have a great resume. They are given more responsibility, and they just aren't capable of handling it well. You also find people making lateral moves who look great on paper and come with solid recommendations but fail in a new environment. The same principle applies to general managers. There is no such thing as a sure thing.

All a team can do is find people who are indeed qualified on paper and then undertake a thorough process to do their best to determine whether somebody would really be good at the job. This is why I am a bit nervous about hearing how the Jets have a favorite before the interviews have begun. They cannot have a favorite until every stone has been turned.

The biggest sure thing ever was Scott Pioli going to the Chiefs four years ago. He was the man who worked with Bill Belichick to build a dynasty. He has been terrible away from Belichick and the New England culture. Even the biggest lock ever failed.

We all hope the legendary Jets' general manager who will lead the team to a championship is in the group they will interview. There's no lock, though. We can only hope Woody Johnson leaves no stone unturned discerning which candidates are good on paper and which truly has the attributes to lead this team places.+