Coming off a 7-9 season and the departure of long-time director of player personnel Nick Caserio to the Houston Texans, the New England Patriots made some changes to their front office. Those changes included bigger roles for two men in particular: Dave Ziegler and Elliot Wolf, who were both heavily involved this offseason.
The Patriots have rebounded nicely this season, in part due to their work. Unsurprisingly, the two are already seen as potential future general managers elsewhere — at least according to a recent list published by CBS’ Jonathan Jones.
Eliot Wolf, Patriots consultant: Ron Wolf’s son has been consulting in New England since 2020. His name has been attached to a potential opening in Vegas.
Before joining the Patriots last offseason as a scouting consultant, Wolf filled numerous roles for three different organizations. Starting his career in the Green Bay Packers’ pro personnel department in 2004 under his father, Hall of Famer Ron Wolf, he worked his way up the ladder to become director of pro personnel (2012-14), of player personnel (2015), and of football operations (2016-2017).
He left Green Bay in 2018 to join the Cleveland Browns as assistant general manager, but was let go again earlier that year. Following a short stint with the Seattle Seahawks, he arrived in New England last March.
Dave Ziegler, Patriots director of player personnel: He took on the role of de facto GM with the team after Nick Caserio left for Houston. I’m told he totally changed the Pats draft process in 2021 and helped Belichick spend big in free agency.
Before arriving in New England, Ziegler spent three seasons working as a pro scout for the Denver Broncos. He additionally assisted the coaching staff in producing and presenting advance scouting reports.
Ziegler eventually left Denver after the 2012 season to join New England’s scouting operation. He worked three years as assistant director of pro scouting, four as director of pro personnel, and was promoted to assistant director of player personnel in 2020.
Ziegler received a new contract and title earlier this year when the Patriots lost Caserio to Houston and the Broncos expressed interest in bringing him back to fill their vacant general manager position. He is now Caserio’s heir as the team’s de facto general manager and Bill Belichick’s right-hand man.