It was just this past summer, when the Giants reorganized their pro personnel department, that Dave Gettleman sounded like a scout whose career was winding down. At age 61, after serving as the director of the team’s department since 1999, Gettleman was moved to a newly created position: Senior Pro Personnel Analyst. Ken Sternfeld took over as director.
“My role moving forward will be strictly player evaluation,” Gettleman said. “It’s a little bit of a restructuring in the way the pro personnel department operates. I thought at this point in my career it was time to take a step back and re-evaluate. We’ve been very successful.”
Gettleman has gone from taking a step back to taking a big leap forward. Today he was named the new general manager of the Panthers, a job that clearly comes with the blessing of former Giants GM Ernie Accorsi who was hired to lead the search for the Panthers.
"I am honored and thrilled to have the opportunity to work in the Panthers organization," Gettleman said in a statement released by the Panthers. "It is similar to the Giants organization in which I have had the privilege of working the last 15 years and has a lot of pieces in place for success. I am excited about getting started."
Gettleman has been a part of six Super Bowl teams, including three winners. He was with Buffalo in 1990 and 1991, Denver in 1997 and the Giants in 2000, 2007 and 2011. The Broncos and the 2007 and 2011 Giants both won the championship.
The new job with the Panthers seems to indicate that the restructuring of the Giants’ department this summer was not Gettleman’s doing and while he remained a trusted adviser to the front office he may have been getting a bit of a nudge out the door.
"I have mixed emotions about this," Giants president and CEO John Mara said today in a statement. "Dave certainly deserves to be a general manager, but I am very sorry to lose him. He has been instrumental to the success we have had and we are certainly going to miss him. He will do a great job for the Carolina Panthers."
Current Giants general manager Jerry Reese was Gettleman’s assistant in pro personnel from 1999-2001.
“He is a true professional that knows the business,” Reese said this summer, “and he has the Super Bowl rings to back it up.”
Giants director of college scouting Marc Ross also interviewed for the Panthers job. While some saw a link between Accorsi and Ross due to their Giants affiliations, they never worked together in the organization. Ross also interviewed for the Jets, Chargers and Jaguars general manager positions.
"The Panthers interviewed two of the top personnel executives in the NFL in Dave and Marc Ross, and couldn't go wrong either way, in my humble opinion," Reese said today.
“I was very impressed with Dave's experience and think he will be a very good fit for our organization," Panthers owner Jerry Richardson said in a statement. “He has an extensive background in personnel and comes from an organization in the New York Giants that I hold in high regard and played an instrumental role in their success.”
It will be interesting to see exactly how much New York Giants flavor -- and personnel -- Gettleman brings with him to the Panthers.