Yesterday, NFL Network's Ian Rapoport reported that the Houston Texans were expected to bring in Buffalo Bills' vice president of player personnel Brian Gaine as their new general manager. While the move has not yet been made official, the expectation is that Gaine will fill the vacant spot, created by Rick Smith taking a leave of absence, any day now – and this is good news for the New England Patriots.
After all, the Texans had two members of the Patriots' personnel department on their radar: Houston requested interviews with both director of player personnel Nick Caserio and director of college scouting Monti Ossenfort. New England denied both requests but under recently loosened NFL rules, the duo was still eligible to interview with the team after the Patriots' season ended.
With the Texans bringing in Gaine, it now looks as if Caserio and Ossenfort will remain with New England for another season. With both staying on board, the front office will remain stable during an offseason that is expected to see some changes within the coaching staff: Both offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and defensive coordinator Matt Patricia are highly coveted head coaching options around the league.
Caserio is with the Patriots since 2002, having worked his way up from personnel and coaching assistant to director of player personnel. The 42-year old John Carroll alum serves as the right-hand man of the de-facto general manager Bill Belichick – and it would not be a surprise to see him eventually take over as Belichick’s successor in that role. Caserio’s contract runs through at least 2020.
Like Caserio, Ossenfort started his career in New England as a personnel assistant and from 2005 on worked his way up through the scouting department until getting promoted to his current role in 2014. The 39-year old has worked for the Texans as a scout before joining the Patriots.