SBD/January 9, 2012/Franchises

NFL Franchise Notes: Colts Owner Irsay Takes To Twitter To Discuss GM Search

Irsay tabbed CFL Alouettes GM Jim Popp as darkhorse candidate for Colts' GM job
In Boston, Young & Bedard cite a source as saying that the Colts "formally requested permission from the Patriots to interview New England director of player personnel Nick Caserio," but Caserio "declined, choosing to stay with the Patriots." Colts Owner Jim Irsay yesterday on Twitter said that the team "will interview seven candidates for the job," but Young & Bedard note Irsay "did not say who they will be." When ESPN's Adam Schefter later tweeted the "first candidate the Colts tried to hire was ... Nick Caserio," Irsay "took umbrage with the report, and called him out in a string of tweets." Irsay wrote, "I haven’t interviewed (anyone) . . . Adam, don’t say I wanted to hire someone I never talked to or met . . . MISLEADING.’’ Schefter responded by saying the NFL told him that Colts General Counsel Daniel Emerson "emailed request for Nick Cesario (sic) on Tues before he opted to stay in NE’’ (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/9).

DARKHORSE IN THE RACE: The GLOBE & MAIL reported Irsay "has tabbed Montreal Alouettes general manager Jim Popp as a darkhorse candidate to become" the team's next GM. In a series of tweets Friday, Irsay said that the "search for a new GM was 'going very well.'" Irsay then "challenged his followers to identify this dark horse candidate, Jim (blank) out of Canada." Irsay later wrote, "Jim Popp! Look at this man's accomplishments! Does he deserve NFL shot or not a good fit in NFL??" (GLOBE & MAIL, 1/7). Meanwhile, in Boston, Greg Bedard wrote he feels bad for Colts former VP & GM Chris Polian, son of former Colts Vice Chair Bill Polian. Chris is "very bright, but he's going to be tarred with this mess." That is "unfair, but that's what happens when the sons of powerful men don't make names for themselves on their own" (BOSTON GLOBE, 1/8).

NOT GOING ANYWHERE: In Baltimore, Vensel & Zrebiec noted the Ravens announced Friday that Dir of Player Personnel Eric DeCosta, "who was being pursued by at least three NFL teams that are currently searching for a new general manager, 'will continue with the team and is not going to interview with other teams.'" DeCosta said previously that it "would take an ideal job opportunity for him to leave the Ravens, who view him as the eventual successor to longtime general manager and executive vice president Ozzie Newsome." DeCosta has been with the Ravens "from the beginning, starting at an entry-level position in 1996" (Baltimore SUN, 1/7).

CATCH-22: In Ft. Lauderdale, Omar Kelly wrote Dolphins Owner Stephen Ross "will either land Jeff Fisher as his franchise's next coach," or he will "lose Fisher" to the Rams. In the end, he "will come off looking like a hero or a loser," and there "is no in between on this one." No matter "what happens -- Ross raises the offer or lets Fisher walk -- either way Ross will come off looking desperate, and that’s not a good look, especially since its one we saw last season when a courtship of Jim Harbaugh left him and South Florida embarrassed." Kelly: "What fans should realize is that there’s an owner in place who is doing everything in his power to turn this franchise’s course, getting the ship headed in the right direction. You wanted the best available coach and that’s what the Dolphins targeted. I’d rather have that kind of owner than one like Tampa Bay and Jacksonville, who didn’t even want to get in the ring" (SUN-SENTINEL.com, 1/8).
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