New England Patriots Training Camp
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The Houston Texans have crossed off one major task from their offseason to-do list just a few days after their regular season ended. According to CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora, Houston has an agreement in place to make New England Patriots executive Nick Caserio its next general manager. Caserio has been New England's director of player personnel since 2008 and has been with the organization since 2001, which means this is a rather seismic move in his NFL career. 

This pursuit of Caserio by the Texans stretches back to 2019 when Houston tried to pry him from Foxborough over that summer following the firing of then-GM Brian Gaine. The key connection between Caserio and the Texans is team VP of football operations Jack Easterby, who was with the Patriots for six seasons before leaving for Houston in 2019. 

While Houston may have pursued him previously, the Patriots triggered a clause in Caserio's deal that blocked him from departing and even went as far as threatening tampering charges against the Texans for how they went after him. That was when the club backed off on trying to ink Caserio to a deal and simply went on to eventually name head coach Bill O'Brien as GM. Since then, O'Brien has been fired, freeing up not only the role that Caserio is about to adopt but also the head coaching position, which is something he'll now help try to fill. 

One noteworthy aspect of this hiring is how it could solidify Easterby's standing within the organization. According to Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network, Caserio was not one of the final candidates on the list that the search firm Korn Ferry presented to the team. 

The Texans interviewed Matt Bazirgan, Trent Kirchner, Omar Khan, Louis Riddick and were scheduled to speak with Scott Cohen, all of whom were on that final list, per Garafolo. However, they still decide to go with Caserio. Texans CEO Cal McNair also reportedly told candidates during interviews that they would let the next GM decide Easteby's role with the club going forward. Given the prior relationship between Easterby and Caserio, it does seem like his role is secure moving forward with this hiring going down. 

While Caserio has not had the GM tag in title in New England, he essentially was the Patriots' de facto GM to Bill Belichick for the past few years. 

"Nick does a great job," Belichick said of Caserio back in January of 2019. "He does a lot of different things for us. I'm sure he does more than anybody in the league at his position in terms of his interaction with the team, the coaching staff and the college and pro scouting. He's involved in a lot of different things and does a great job at all of them. His job description would be several pages." 

Caserio does have his work cut out for him with the Texans, who just wrapped up a 4-12 season and are in a rough cap situation along with not having a first-round pick this year. That said, he does have quarterback Deshaun Watson to build around, which is one major piece he won't have to search for as he begins this tenure in Houston. 

As for the Patriots, assistant director of player personnel Dave Ziegler could have the inside track at replacing Caserio.