The Bears search for Jerry Angelos replacement will make its way through some candidates with other NFL teams; Ted Phillips and his in-house search committee have been doing homework on prospects already. Tim Ruskell, the current director of player personnel, is a candidate, one who wont need a lot of vetting, just some updating.
But while management stated last week that coach Lovie Smith will remain for 2012 and the new GM would be someone who fit with Smith, two secondary questions about Ruskell didnt come up.
How involved, if at all, is Ruskell in the search process? With his experience in Tampa, Atlanta and Seattle, he knows people. If Smith will be involved in any capacity in the search, what about Ruskell? The new GM would be his new boss as well as Smiths.
But if Smith is a must-keep for the new GM, is Ruskell? Does the new GM have the authority to fire him? And if he does not get the job, will he be able or want to stay?
Ruskell has headed up pro and college ops since Angelo brought him in and consolidated the offices of pro personnel and college scouting directors. If he exits, voluntarily or otherwise, with the scouting combine, free agency and the draft coming, the already sizeable pressure on the new guy, going into a pivotal year for Lovie Smith and his staff, increases.