The NFL is filled with talented people who make football decisions every day. They are talent evaluators who know what they like when they see it, and they understand the game is a complex business. This article shares the five best general managers in the NFL today. The reader will notice that each GM has been on the job for some time, and their longevity is the product of a culture that values winning over change.
#1: Ted Thompson
Ted Thompson works the fans of the Green Bay Packers, and he constructed a team around Aaron Rodgers that has won a Super Bowl, is in contention consistently and relies on the draft. He does not sign big free agents unless it is absolutely necessary, and he has maintained a quality team even in the transition from Brett Favre to Aaron Rodgers. Drafting Rodgers turned out to be a stroke of genius, and he is reaping the rewards of finding his quarterback. The people of Green Bay respect him, and he is a well-liked executive across the league.
#2: Ozzie Newsome
Ozzie Newsome is a retiree from the old Cleveland Browns who has been the GM in Baltimore for quite a long time. He is so long-tenured in Baltimore that fans forget how long he has been with the team. He has drafted all the best players in franchise history, and fans point to him as the reason they have two Super Bowl wins in Baltimore. The old Cleveland Browns were snake-bitten, but the Baltimore Ravens as a team others choose to copy.
#3: John Schneider
The Seattle Seahawks were reborn under John Schneider and Pete Carroll. There are quite a few fans who accuse Pete Carroll of being the GM as Bill Belichick is in New England, but he coaches. He motivates players to be their best, and Schneider finds the talent. They have a system that works, and they have been to two Super Bowls using Schneider’s fundamentals. The NFL is leaning in the direction of Schneider as he turned Russell Wilson from a late-round pick into a superstar. He has found talent in the back of the draft where others are not looking, but he is doing so with a west coast flair.
#4: John Elway
John Elway is perhaps the finest prospect to ever come out of college. He is a hall of famer, and he won two Super Bowls in five tries with the Broncos. He is now the president of the team, and he brought them two visits to the Super Bowl and one win by signing Peyton Manning, finding late-round talent and not overpaying for players. His first big deal was to Von Miller, but that is a generational talent. John Elway deserves the executive of the year award several times over for the work he has done after his playing career ended.
#5: Bill Belichick
Bill Belichick did not begin as the GM in New England, but he is the creator of the system used by several coaches across football. Nick Saban may go down in history as the greatest college football coach of all time, but his process was learned under Belichick. The Patriots have turned nobodies into superstars left and right, and the team has won four Super Bowls in six appearances under Belichick. He is one of the best coaches ever, and he is one of the best GMs at the same time.
This list comprises every man in the NFL who will likely never lose his job. They have cemented their foundations deep with their respective teams and cities.