It’s been reported ad nauseam that the New York Jets prefer to hire Joe Douglas as their next general manager. The Jets are set to formally interview the Eagles’ vice president of player personnel this weekend.
But is Douglas as interested in the Jets as they are in him? That’s not as clear.
Unless, that is, if you ask former NFL general manager Mike Lombardi. Here’s what Lombardi recently had to say on his podcast:
ADNAN VIRK: You’ve been so good with this Jets stuff. Obviously, you nailed the fact that [Mike] Maccagnan was in trouble prior to a lot of people thinking so — hint, hint, [Mike] Francesa. Any ideas where the Jets could be leaning here?
LOMBARDI: Everybody tells me it’s Joe Douglas. I mean, look, Joe Douglas — he’s going to have options. Well, Joe Douglas wants to leave Philly. I don’t think Joe Douglas is really that comfortable in Philadelphia in this current setup. The Eagles are going really extensively — they hired [former Browns executive] Andrew Berry. They’re going to go really with the analytics. Now, I think they’re going to do both. I think they’re going to have an analytic department and have an old school personnel department and see if they can bridge the two gaps. I don’t think Joe Douglas is sitting there, singing kumbaya every single day in the office. Everybody tells me [the Jets GM opening] is his job. I can’t believe it’s somebody else. [Vikings executive] George Paton turned them down once before.
And look, this whole notion of [Adam] Gase has got to give the [control over the 53-man roster], I don’t think Gase has any problem giving somebody the 53. I think it’s an argument for the media more than it is an argument for the coach. The 53 is insignificant, it’s the 45 [players who dress for game day]. If you tell me I have to dress this guy and he sucks, now you’re really interfering with my life. But if you tell me — like I would tell a coach, pick whoever you want on the 53, give me two players you want to cut, and if we can find a better player than that player we’ll bring him in. But this fight over the 53 is really a fight for really a piece of land that isn’t really worthwhile. It’s ridiculous. Like, why do it? So I think if Douglas has to get that [power] to get out of his Eagles contract or if the Eagles won’t let him go, I don’t see that being a problem.
This is the first we’ve heard about Douglas’ intentions. If Lombardi’s information is good — and to be fair, he has seemingly been plugged in on the Jets’ situation — then Douglas does seem bound to leave the Eagles in the near future.