On Friday the Pittsburgh Steelers announced that they have completed interviews with three candidates for their soon-to-be open general manager job, all of whom currently work for fellow AFC teams.
Ryan Cowden (Titans)
The list includes Ryan Cowden, 43, who is the vice president of player personnel for the Tennessee Titans. He has been with the Titans since 2016, coming to Tennessee after spending 16 years in the scouting department of the Carolina Panthers.
Cowden oversees all areas of the scouting department for the Titans, including advance scouting, free agency preparation, and evaluation of players in the NFL and other professional leagues. In addition, he assists with college scouting and preparation for the NFL Draft.
Earlier in this hiring cycle, Cowden interviewed to become the general manager of the New York Giants, a job that went to former Buffalo Bills assistant general manager Joe Schoen.
Ed Dodds (Colts)
Also on the list is Ed Dodds, who has been the assistant general manager for the Indianapolis Colts for the past four years after spending one season as vice president of player personnel for the organization. Prior to moving to Indy, Dodds spent a decade in the scouting department of the Seattle Seahawks. During this hiring cycle he interviewed with the Las Vegas Raiders and Chicago Bears for their general manager positions, with the former job going to Dave Ziegler.
JoJo Wooden (Chargers)
Finally, there’s JoJo Wooden, who has been with the San Diego/Los Angeles Chargers since 2013 and is currently the team’s director of player personnel, tasked with overseeing the team’s pro and college scouting departments. Prior to joining the Chargers, Wooden spent 16 seasons with the New York Jets. Back in January, he interviewed for the Bears general manager job, a position that went to Ryan Poles.
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The Steelers Have 2 Internal Candidates
As noted by Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, the Steelers also have a pair of internal candidates—Omar Khan and Brandon Hunt—who have already interviewed for the job. There are likely to be other outside candidates interviewed as well.
According to Ed Bouchette of The Athletic, other potential candidates could include: Andy Weidl, vice president of player personnel for the Philadelphia Eagles; John Wojciechowski, co-director of player personnel for the Green Bay Packers; and Rob McCartney, director of pro scouting for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Former Steelers pro scouting coordinator Doug Whaley—currently the senior vice president of player personnel for the XFL—could also get an interview.
Per Bouchette, there’s also a good chance that the Steelers don’t hire a new general manager to replace Kevin Colbert and instead split the job responsibilities between the aforementioned Khan and Hunt.
Regardless, team president Art Rooney II has indicated that the Steelers will likely not be making a hire until Kevin Colbert steps down after the conclusion of the 2022 NFL Draft.
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