Here are some potential NFL executives as of 2012, now that the Panther sare on the look:
To start, it's worth cautioning against the idea of wanting to grab from amongst two personnel departments: The Pats and Ravens. New England's pro personnel department has major flaws - for every even-keeled but unremarkable Thomas Dimitroff, there appear to be a lot more Scott Piolis out there (Pioli's team's dysfunction runs quite deep as of reports coming out of the Chiefs last year).
The Ravens' staff, led by Ozzie Newsome, is fantastic and has run along different coaching philosophies, not missing a beat. But Eric DeCosta isn't on the list for various reasons - he's turned down a couple teams already, and he's an heir apparent there; but as well, everyone that's left the Ravens organization has been a disaster. George Kokinis left for the Browns and didn't make it a year before returning to the Ravens in shame.
There's no doubting that Carolina is a loyal organization - and that Marty Hurney benefitted from that doubly. He got his job as a promotion from within, something that Carolina enjoys; he kept his job this long primarily out of loyalty and teamwork with all entities. Assuming Jerry Richardson remains in the picture due to any health concerns, that's not likely to change. Someone who knows the Carolina way, and that already knows Richardson and team President Danny Morrison, has value. So let's start there:
*Don Gregory - College Scouting Director
Gregory has been with the team in this role since 2006 - and was a part of a very prolific set of drafts in 2006-08. Carolina's his first title upgrade, having been a scout for the Chiefs for the five years prior, and wth the XFL for a year before that, and was a scout for the Chargers 95-99.
*Rob Rogers - Director of Team Administration
An intriguing in-house candidate because Rodgers has only been a Panther - a Harvard grad, I can't find when Rodgers came in, but he started as an intern and quickly moved up to a contract negotiator, eventually earning his current title. That's a similar path to how Hurney himself moved up, but Rogers is younger and brighter. There's no real information on the Panthers using Sabermetrics/advanced statistics, but if it does happen in the building, it'd be Rogers who would discern that information as well.
*Tony Softli - the former college scouting director with Carolina through 2005 was VP - Personnel with the Rams (06-09). When with Carolina, Softli was an outspoken assistant, and his reach also went toward free agency in the team's most prolific FA signing periods since Bill Polian. Softli is currently a radio analyst in St. Louis, and would be a dark horse candidate, but does have internal ties.
*Brandon Beane - Director of Football Operations
With the team since 1998, the UNCW grad has moved up and is apparently the team's capologist. Currently handing the job, but has no real scouting experience.
*John Dorsey, Directer of Football Operations, Packers:
Dorsey has been with the Packers for 22 years, not a short amount of time; he recently received the upgraded status from being the head of college scouting. Dorsey may not be an ideal candidate to jump ship because of loyalty, but he's got nowhere to go with Ted Thompson rooted fairly deeply as GM. He's a fantastic candidate from a fine organization, and took his rightful place as #2 in the org after one of my favorite up and coming GM candidates went to Oakland - Reggie McKenzie.
*Marc Ross, Director of College Scouting, Giants:
Ross, 38 and a Princeton grad, worked his way to become a director of college scouting with the Eagles in 2000; after a few years as a national scout with the Bills he got a second shot with the Giants, where he's thriving. GM Jerry Reese is somewhat the model of a younger GM, and Ross fits in the mold of someone you'd want to grab if you're looking to emulate Reese.
*Lake Dawson, Vice President of Football Operations, Titans:
Dawson, 40, is a former NFL WR, was director of pro personnel 2007-2010 and has been with the Titans since 2001. Now he's essentially assistant GM under Ruston Webster, scouting all facets of football and being involved in the day to day operation of the team.