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New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham is congratulated by quarterback Drew Brees during the Pro Bowl on Sunday in Honolulu. For result of the game, go to journalgazette.net.
NFL

After 3-week search, Dolphins hire new GM

– In their fitful, laborious search for a general manager, the Miami Dolphins finally found someone to say yes: Dennis Hickey.

The longtime Tampa Bay Buccaneers executive accepted the team’s general manager job Sunday, ending a search that lasted nearly three weeks.

Hickey’s hiring came after the Dolphins were rejected by several candidates. New England Patriots director of player personnel Nick Caserio and Tennessee Titans vice president of player personnel Lake Dawson turned down job offers only hours before Miami reached out to Hickey, while Cleveland Browns assistant general manager Ray Farmer withdrew from consideration Thursday.

Several others declined invitations to interview as a replacement for Jeff Ireland, whose six-year stint as general manager ended Jan. 7 when he and owner Stephen Ross agreed to part ways.

Hickey had been with the Buccaneers for 18 seasons, including the past three as director of player personnel. He was their director of college scouting for six years.

He was not interviewed for Tampa Bay’s GM job when it became open after this season. The Bucs won four division titles and one Super Bowl championship during his time with them, but went 28-52 over the past five years and had spotty draft results during that span.

Hickey was among eight candidates interviewed by Miami.

In a news release to announce the hiring, the Dolphins said Hickey will oversee all aspects of football operations and report directly to Ross. Coach Joe Philbin will continue to report directly to Ross as well.

Ross’ loyalty to Philbin, who is 15-17 in two seasons with Miami, may have been a stumbling block for some candidates. In a statement, Ross cited Hickey’s willingness to work with Philbin as a factor in the hiring.

“When we started the search, I outlined qualities that I was looking for in this position,” Ross said. “These included a collaborative team-first person who can work with Joe, demonstrated player evaluation expertise, and someone who is open-minded and creative. Dennis fit all of these criteria.”

The Titans’ Dawson released a statement saying he had declined Miami’s job offer.

“I felt Stephen is a great owner, passionate and wants to win, but the details of the offer didn’t align with my vision,” Dawson said.

Redskins hire assistant

The Washington Redskins hired Randy Jordan as running backs coach.

The 43-year-old Jordan spent the last two years as running backs coach at North Carolina. He also has coached running backs at Texas A&M and Nebraska.

His only NFL coaching experience came as a special teams assistant with the Raiders in 2003.

Jordan played nine seasons in the NFL, rushing for 574 yards with the Raiders and Jaguars.

Jordan replaces Bobby Turner, one of several assistants not retained after coach Mike Shanahan was fired this month and replaced by Jay Gruden.

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