The Pittsburgh Steelers interviewed three former NFL general managers in Jerry Reese, Rick Spielman and Doug Whaley for their general manager opening, the team announced on Saturday.
This brings the number of candidates Pittsburgh has interviewed for the open position to 16 total. Kevin Colbert will be stepping down after the draft. Since neither of the three announced today are employed by an NFL team, they did not have to formally request permission to interview the candidates.
Reese was a long-time member of the New York Giants organization. From 2007 to 2017, he was their general manager. Winning two Super Bowls with the team as general manager, Reese has the pedigree and was highly successful. He rose up from college scout to director of player personnel to the general manager position. Reese was fired in 2017 from the position along with head coach Ben McAdoo.
Spielman was an executive with extensive experience around the NFL world. He cut his teeth as a college scout with the Detroit Lions in the 1990s. Spielman was trained under the tutelage of Colbert, who was the pro scouting director for Detroit during the same time. He would later head to Chicago and then to Miami, where he would become the general manager for the 2004 season. Spielman left the Dolphins but returned in a role with the Minnesota Vikings. In 2012, Spielman was promoted to general manager from vice president of player personnel. Spielman was fired in January along with head coach Mike Zimmer.
Whaley is a Pittsburgh native and a graduate of Upper St. Clair. Not only that, but Whaley is also a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, where he played defensive back. Whaley joined the Steelers organization to kickstart his front-office career. After a decade with the Steelers, Whaley was hired away by the Buffalo Bills. In 2013, he was named the general manager of the Bills. He was fired after the 2017 NFL Draft. Whaley is now the vice president of player personnel for the XFL.
The Steelers plan to name their general manager after the 2022 NFL Draft when Colbert will step down from his post.