The Philadelphia Eagles executive Joe Douglas was hired Friday night to serve as the Jets’ general manager, with the task of leading the team back to respectability.
Douglas, the Eagles’ vice president of player personnel, was one of four candidates interviewed twice by the Jets for the vacancy. He met with team officials last Saturday and Sunday and again during the week.
The team announced Friday night on Twitter that it had agreed to terms with Douglas. The Jets did not announce the terms of the deal, but ESPN reported that he was offered a six-year contract.
Douglas was widely considered the top candidate because he had previous experience working with Jets Coach Adam Gase, who was the team’s acting general manager and was involved in the search process. Douglas was the Chicago Bears’ director of college scouting in 2015 when Gase was the team’s offensive coordinator.
They are now leading an organization that has not been to the playoffs since the 2010 season.
Douglas replaces Mike Maccagnan, who was unexpectedly fired last month after four seasons when Christopher Johnson, the Jets’ chairman and chief executive, said he had taken a “deeper dive” during the off-season to analyze the inner workings of the football side of the organization. Johnson decided to move on from Maccagnan — having already fired Coach Todd Bowles after the season — and stressed that he was looking for “a strategic thinker.” He added that the general manager should be “more than a talent evaluation guy.” He also said he wanted “a great manager, a communicator — someone who can collaborate well with the building.”
The Jets believe they have exactly that in Douglas, who was widely considered one of the league’s up-and-coming potential general managers.
He beat out Champ Kelly, the Bears’ assistant director of player personnel; Terry Fontenot, the New Orleans Saints’ director of pro scouting; and Scott Fitterer, a director of player personnel for the Seattle Seahawks.
Douglas helped build the Eagles into a Super Bowl champion during the 2017 season, working closely with Howie Roseman, the executive vice president of football operations, after joining Philadelphia’s front office in 2016.
Before his one season in Chicago, Douglas worked in the Baltimore Ravens’ personnel department from 2000 until 2015. He held various posts with the team during that time, including national scout, Southeast area scout, East Coast area scout, Northeast area scout and player personnel assistant.
A former offensive tackle, Douglas started 45 straight games for the University of Richmond and was an all-Atlantic 10 selection.
Douglas inherits a solid core of talent with the Jets, including the second-year quarterback Sam Darnold, running back Le’Veon Bell, safety Jamal Adams, linebacker C. J. Mosley, defensive lineman Leonard Williams and the first-round draft pick Quinnen Williams.
Douglas and Gase will report to Johnson separately, a structure the owner has said he believes is most effective. Gase was responsible for player personnel during his three years as coach in Miami but said that was not something he wanted in New York.
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