When Ernie Accorsi was hired to lead the search for the new Carolina Panthers' general manager it was an even bet that either Marc Ross of Dave Gettleman would be hired. After months of waiting, and just over a week since the end of the season the Panthers have their man -- and having Dave Gettleman lead the organization makes sense for a variety of reasons.
Looking at the totality of the search it was clear what the Panthers wanted: someone with a wealth of front-office experience, and a history of pro scouting. It's easy to pick apart Marty Hurney's poor drafts, but the true deficiency Carolina have had over the last decade was an inability to evaluate their own talent in-house, letting talented players leave too soon, while others were retained haphazardly. The issues with the salary cap are in direct relation to trying to cover a bullet-hole with a bandaid, and as a result there's too much money being paid to players other teams around the league would have parted ways with. This falls into the hands of pro-scouting.
Using the term 'among league circles' is a somewhat dangerous proposition, but in the case of Dave Gettleman you see a man characterized as the glue that has held front office's together. When the New York Giants seamlessly transitioned from Accorsi to Reese, there was Gettleman -- he works with a variety of different people, and understands the league. He has been an executive on six Super Bowl teams, and within his own role knows what it takes to develop a franchise.
At 62-years-old the Panthers may not be getting an executive who will be with them for the next two decades, but they have someone with experience who can change the culture. There could be many new members of the front office too, depending on who Gettleman elects to pull from New York and promote.
It's important to note that any moves Gettleman makes as general manager will unlikely effect April's draft, nor will retaining the scouting department be indicative of him supporting Marty Hurney's vision. College scouts are often kept through the completion of the draft, and while big changes could be underway, it's also important to keep the status quo -- at least through April.
A press conference will likely be held tomorrow, where Panthers' fans will get their first sense of Dave Gettleman's vision for the organization. If his successes in Carolina are anything like what he did in New York, this was a very smart hiring.