With the offseason officially underway for the New England Patriots and 17 other teams around the NFL, coaches and front office personnel can now begin looking for other opportunities in case they present themselves. One name to watch from the Patriots’ perspective will again be director of player personnel Nick Caserio.
It seems as if the first club has already expressed concrete interest in Caserio: according to a report by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Carolina Panthers have asked the Patriots’ permission to interview the 45-year-old for their vacant general manager position.
Caserio will be part of a group that reportedly also includes former New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese, Buffalo Bills assistant GM Joe Schoen, and Cleveland Browns vice president of football operations Kewsi Adofo-Mensah. With the exception of Reese, the other candidates all need their team’s permission to talk to the Panthers.
While it remains to be seen whether or not the Patriots grant permission for the interview, Sunday’s report is further confirmation that Caserio will be a name to watch this offseason. He has also been linked to the Houston Texans as a “name of interest” earlier on Sunday. The Texans have of course tried to lure Caserio away for quite some time now; their latest attempt led to the Patriots filing tampering charges against the team.
Caserio, who first arrived in New England in 2001 and has worked his way up the organizational ladder before taking over his current role in 2008, did sign a new contract with the Patriots last offseason. However, a promotion in terms of title and responsibilities — moving from director of player personnel under de facto GM Bill Belichick to general manager with final say over the roster — might still be enough to lure him away.
Carolina’s general manager position opened up two weeks ago when the club parted ways with Marty Hurney, its GM of the past four seasons.