Pollard Alliance chair reverses stance on Dolphins

After expressing initial concern about the power of the general manager position with the Miami Dolphins, Fritz Pollard Alliance Chairman John Wooten said Thursday night that he was “satisfied” with how the job had been explained to him by a Dolphins spokesman. As a result, Wooten said he would recommend that any minority candidates who were seeking guidance from the alliance take the interview with the Dolphins.

The Dolphins have been linked with minority candidates such as Lake Dawson, Marc Ross and Ray Farmer.

“When I listened to the comments from (owner) Stephen Ross on Wednesday, I was con-cerned that this would be a normal personnel position and wouldn’t have the power to perform the job the way a general manager should,” said Wooten, who earlier on Thursday said he would not recommend candidate take the interview.

“From what I have been told now, the position will have the full authority to do the job properly and I feel comfortable with what the Dolphins are putting in place,” Wooten said.

The Dolphins released a statement from Ross on Thursday night clarifying the power of the job. This came after Ross said Wednesday that he tried to keep previous GM Jeff Ireland by reducing Ireland’s power. Ross said he would conduct the search for the new general manager with the assistance of long-time friend and former Kansas City Chiefs President Carl Peterson.

“We will begin interviewing candidates for the General Manager position tomorrow. It will be a thorough process with the goal of bringing the best person to help us build a team that will be a consistent winner. Carl Peterson will serve as an advisor to me on this search. Carl and I have had a business relationship for almost 30 years dating back to the USFL and I have tremendous respect for his experience and judgment on team building and football operations. He will advise me on the search but he will not have a role with the Dolphins after the process is over.

“The new General Manager will have autonomous responsibility for the 53 man roster and selecting players during the draft and will report to me. First and foremost, this person must have a passion for the game and demonstrated player evaluation expertise. They will need to be a person who is a collaborative team player that puts the organization first. Regardless of reporting structure, the relationship between the General Manager and Coach Philbin must be one of trust, respect, and collaboration, and this will be an area we will look closely at during the process. This individual also must be a person with integrity who is open-minded and creative.

“Our media relations department will update you on the list of candidates when interviews are finalized. Once the process is complete, I will make the final decision on who to hire.

“Coach Philbin and his staff are continuing their offseason activities while conducting interviews for the offensive coordinator position. We are also working on our draft preparation, including our upcoming trip to the Senior Bowl as well as all of the other aspects of player evaluation and procurement. At the end of this process, we will be a stronger organization with people working together to build a championship team.”

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