The NFL is evaluating some final candidates to replace departed VP of football operations, Ray Anderson, finishing up interviews with both internal and external candidates, league sources said. Ultimately, the position, one of the more important within the league office, could end up divide between a few people, involving possible promotions for internal candidates and help from the outside.
Ron Hill, who is already an executive in the NFL's football operations department, has a strong football background with 33 years in the and is one of the men under consideration, while Jack Mulla, former counsel of the New England Patriots, was one of the final two or three outside candidates, sources said, but he is withdrawing from the process to focus on his consulting business, which helps both pro and college teams and has worked with each of the past five NCAA football champions.
Over the past few months some of the internal candidates have been handling Anderson's former responsibilities, but with the job involving the football side -- with officiating, the competition committee, rule changes, over seeing on-field discipline -- as well as duties involving business affairs, ongoing technology, etc, it could result in a slightly different structure moving forward.
With the owners meetings just a month away, some teams are getting anxious to see who is brought in and/or promoted into these duties, and the NFL is certainly moving closer to making those decisions final. Jeff Pash, general counsel for the NFL, has been very involved in the process, with Commissioner Roger Goodell ultimately making the final determination, in consult with his inner circle, on the matter.