Report: Seahawks' John Idzik 'clear front-runner' to be Jets GM

John Idzik, Seattle Seahawks vice president of football

John Idzik, Seattle Seahawks vice president of football administration, looks on during a game against the Denver Broncos. (Credit: AP, 2010)

It appears the Jets have found their man. Only one question remains: Does John Idzik want the job?

The Seahawks executive has emerged as the "clear front-runner" for the Jets' vacant general manager position, according to ESPN. The report also indicated the Jets could offer Idzik a contract "as early as" Thursday night, but a person with knowledge of the situation said a hire would not be made official at that time.

Idzik, the Seahawks' vice president of football administration, has experience with salary-cap negotiations and scouting -- a plus for the Jets, a team that hasn't displayed the most sound judgment when it comes to personnel decisions.

A former wide receiver at Dartmouth, Idzik coached in various capacities with Duke, SUNY Buffalo and Scotland's Aberdeen Oilers in the British American Football League. During his time as Tampa Bay's assistant GM, he helped build the roster of the Buccaneers team that won the Super Bowl 10 years ago. He also helped shape the 2008 NFC champion Cardinals as their senior director of football operations for three seasons. His father, John, was a Jets assistant coach from 1977-79.

Idzik, who flew in earlier this week for his second interview with the Jets, is back in Seattle.

The Jets initially seemed interested in candidates with strong personnel backgrounds, reportedly including a $1-million housing allowance in the contract they were preparing for former Falcons executive Dave Caldwell. But Caldwell chose the Jaguars' general manager job instead. In recent days, the Jets' applicant pool grew to include candidates known best for their salary-cap expertise. But Idzik strikes a balance between both worlds.

The Jets have yet to inform other candidates of their plans.

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