3. Jeff Ireland-Assistant General Manager/College Scouting Director, New Orleans Saints
Jeff Ireland has been involved in scouting or has had a role in a NFL front office since 1994, when he came into the league as a NFL scouting combine scout. Since then he has served as a scout for the Kansas City Chiefs and Dallas Cowboys, before notably becoming the general manager of the Miami Dolphins from 2008-2013. Following his dismissal from the Dolphins in 2014, he worked with the Seattle Seahawks as a draft consultant for a season before moving to his current role with the New Orleans Saints in 2015.
Ireland’s time in Miami was tumultuous, as it included infamously asking Dez Bryant if his mother was a prostitute prior to the 2010 draft, an incident where he yelled profanity at a heckling Dolphins fan in 2012 and the Richie Incognito and Jonathan Martin bullying incident in 2013. Following these incidents, Miami and Ireland decided to mutually part ways prior to the 2014 season.
Since his disastrous time in Miami, Ireland has resurrected his career with the New Orleans Saints. Ireland has been given credit for orchestrating the draft that saw the Saints select both Marshon Lattimore and Alvin Kamara in 2017. Lattimore and Kamara would go on to become the first rookies since 1967 to win the Offensive and Defensive Rookie of the Year awards as players from the same team in the same year. In addition, Ireland is credited for the Michael Thomas draft pick and the Saints signing undrafted free agent kicker Wil Lutz.
Given his ability to scout and find elite talent, Ireland has to be a top candidate for a potential vacancy in the New York Giants general manager position. However, the past issues that he had as a general manager may give ownership pause when considering Ireland. That said, it is entirely possible that Ireland has learned from his past transgressions. The Saints have certainly benefited from his ability to judge talent and construct an NFL roster, traits the Giants are in dire need of.