I was reading a blog entry by former scout Dave Razzano, who is a Playmaker Mobile correspondent with more than 22 years of professional scouting experience with the San Francisco 49ers, St. Louis Rams and Arizona Cardinals under NFL coaches including Bill Walsh, George Seifert, Chuck Knox and Dick Vermeil. He’s been a part of five Super Bowls with three Super Bowl wins (49ers, 1989, 1990; Rams, 2000). In which he brought up an interesting point about former scouts turning heads as they become general managers.
There are currently, at last count eleven teams that are run by former scouts and most have become upper echelon NFL teams or teams on the rise. They are Atlanta Falcons (Thomas Dimitroff), Cleveland Browns (Tom Heckert), Green Bay Packers (Ted Thompson), Indianapolis Colts (Bill Polian), Jacksonville Jaguars (Gene Smith), Miami Dolphins (Jeff Ireland), New York Giants (Jerry Reese), Pittsburgh Steelers (Kevin Colbert), San Diego Chargers (AJ Smith), San Francisco 49ers (Trent Baalke) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Mark Dominik).
In 2010 the combined recorded for these eleven teams was 100 -76 giving them a winning percentage of .568 with seven teams having a winning record. It should be noted that Baalke, was hired this off-season. So technically, last season there were only 10 teams run by former scouts, which would bring there over all level of success up a tad bit, to .588 with a 70% success rate of having atleast finished the regular season with a winning record, as those ten teams went a combined 94-66.
Out of the other 22 teams last season run by non-former scouts only 7 teams had a winning recorded and they combined to go 162-190 with a winning percentage of .643 and 31% of those teams finished the regular season with a winning record.
It is becoming apparent, that more and more owners are looking for general managers that can also double as in-house sounding boards for their respective scouting departments. The recent success by former scouts turned general mangers could have a profound effect in the coming years as more and more teams look to the new wave of the future.
It’s a sound business decision on the part of owners to have general managers who know the ins and outs of scouting players as the price of players drafted in the first round continue to skyrocket.