The Browns have completely overhauled their football operations department during the last month with the firing of Sashi Brown along with the hiring of new general manager John Dorsey as well Alonzo Highsmith from the Green Bay front office.
They may also be ready to pluck another from the Green Bay system.
On Tuesday, the Browns interviewed Packers Director of Football Operations Eliot Wolf for a personnel role in their front office according to multiple media reports.
Wolf is 35 years old and has spent the last fourteen seasons as a member of the Packers organization in a number of roles.
- 2004-2008: Pro Personnel Assistant
- 2008-2010: Assistant Director of Pro Personnel
- 2011: Assistant Director of Player Personnel
- 2012-2014: Director of Pro Personnel
- 2015: Director of Player Personnel
- 2016-present: Director of Football Operations
Currently his duties in Green Bay is coordinator the pro and college departments as well as evaluating college and pro prospects, scouting opponents for the Packers and evaluating potential free agents and player tryouts.
He’s been linked to general manager positions for the last several years including the Browns after the 2015 season before the Browns decided to promote Brown to Executive VP of Football Operations and hired Andrew Berry as Vice President of Player Personnel.
Wolf interviewed for the Packers open general manager position after Ted Thompson was transferred to a senior advisor role. The job eventually went to another Packers executive Brian Gutekunst.
There’s the obvious connection between Wolf, Dorsey, and Highsmith as they worked side for years in Green Bay and there’s also Eliot’s father, former Packers GM and Hall of Fame executive Ron Wolf who recommended hiring Dorsey to Browns owner Jimmy Haslam.
It’s unclear what position Wolf would have in the current Browns structure but it’s obvious he would be a great addition due to his 25 years of experience in football and he’s had his hand in helping the Packers contend for the playoffs every season as well as a Super Bowl title in 2011.
The Browns are clearly moving with a new front office approach with experienced football executives led by Dorsey after the failed analytics experience led by Sashi Brown that’s resulted in a 1-31 record.
There’s some competition though for his services as the Packers want to retain him and Gutekunst stated that Wolf would be his “right hand man” in Green Bay if he chooses to stay. Along with the Browns, the Oakland Raiders have offered Wolf a position in their front office to work with general manager and former Packers executive Reggie McKenzie as well as new Raiders head coach Jon Gruden.
I don’t know if this is possible scenario but in order to convince Wolf to come here, if I was Jimmy Haslam I would do the following.
- Promote John Dorsey to President of Football Operations
- Hire Eliot Wolf as general manager
- Alonzo Highsmith as Vice President of Player Personnel
There’s already been rumors of VP of PlayerAndrew Berry going elsewhere once the front office is re-structured. Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com mentioned Monday night that Berry could end up with a team like the New York Giants as the “right hand man” behind new general manager Dave Gettleman.
Former Colts general manager and current Senior Football Executive Ryan Grigson could also likely end up elsewhere.
As for Paul DePodesta and Ken Kovash who were part of the analytics movement, I don’t see a scenario where they stick around unless Dorsey wants to incorporate analytics into part of their evaluation which based on his track record at Kansas City, he may find use in them for the Browns evaluating of prospects.
It’s the beginning of another offseason of change for the Cleveland Browns, let’s just hope the change is for the better and not for the worse.