The Eagles held a big press conference yesterday with Jeff Lurie, Joe Banner, new team president Don Smolenski and Andy Reid to bid Banner adieu. It was a lot of "this guy is the best!" as you can imagine, but there was some interesting stuff from Lurie about the structure of the Eagles front office.
First, the way the Eagles worked with the president being so involved in the football side of things is not normal. So as Banner leaves, Smolenski won't suddenly be involved in contracts and what not. As Lurie puts it, they'll transition to a more "traditional" structure.
"I think we're transitioning to what is very common in the National Football League and a much more traditional structure where there is a GM, there's a coach, and the president is not overseeing contracts and salary cap analysis. We had a unique situation with Joe where he was one of the best in the league in those areas and a president doesn't normally oversee those areas, but how could you not utilize the most talented guy around in those responsibilities. Now, we're in a very much common and traditional structure where there's a coach and a general manager who are the heads of the football operations. Around the league, in almost every case, is the way it operates."
While this does mean that Howie Roseman will have extra responsibilities, he says it really doesn't change Andy Reid's job. He's still the coach and still has final say over all personnel moves.
"Andy's responsibilities are exactly the same as before the transition. There is no increase in any aspect of the job and it's Howie who is taking on more responsibilities of the job, as he has for many months now. Those are in the obvious areas: player negotiations and cap structuring and analysis. Those are the two key areas in which Joe brought in a unique sense of awareness and key sense of responsibility, and we now have a very traditional structure where the GM and the coach are the football entity."
The general gist of the presser was that while this does represent a change, it's not a change that just happened. When Banner told Lurie that he was looking to move on a year ago, they started to segue him out of the day to day operations. Howie Roseman has essentially been doing the whole job for most of the past year.