Brian Gaine, Miami’s assistant general manager, had his second interview on Friday for the job that became vacant on January 7th when Ross and Jeff Ireland mutually agreed to part ways.
Caserio, who is currently the director of player personnel for the AFC East rival New England Patriots, went from being the last candidate to interview on Friday to making a strong enough impression to be invited back.
Coming from an organization in New England that has been to five Super Bowls since the turn of the century and winning three titles gives Caserio some perspective on how to build a championship team. He has spent 13 seasons with the Patriots, 11 of them on the personnel side, and was promoted to his current position in February of 2008.
Caserio served as Bill Belichick’s wide receivers coach in 2007. That’s the year Randy Moss caught 23 touchdown passes and New England went 16-0 in the regular season before losing to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl to fall a game shy of the first perfect season since Miami’s in 1972. His only other year on Belichick’s coaching staff was in 2002 as an offensive coaching assistant.
Success has followed Caserio dating back to his college days as a four-year starter at quarterback for John Carroll University, where he led the Blue Streaks to just their second appearance in the NCAA Division III Tournament and was a two-time captain and three-time All-Conference selection. He went into the coaching ranks as a graduate assistant at Saginaw Valley State for two years from 1999-2001 and then spent a brief period in the same role at Central Michigan in 2001 before joining the Patriots’ scouting department as a personnel assistant – the year they won their first Super Bowl.
After his first season on the coaching staff the following year, Caserio became an area scout for two years and then was named director of pro personnel in 2004. He handled press box responsibilities for the coaching staff during games from 2003-06, moved back to the sidelines in 2007 and made his final move back to the front office on the first day of the 2008 NFL Scouting Combine.
Hickey, the Bucs’ director of player personnel, has spent the last 18 seasons in Tampa Bay and was part of the team’s Super Bowl championship in 2002-03 and four division titles. Before getting promoted to his current position in 2011 he was the Bucs’ director of college scouting for six seasons.
After finishing his college football career as a three-year starter and captain at the University of Tulsa, Hickey was an assistant coach at Blinn Junior College in Texas from 1994-95. Then he joined the Buccaneers as a pro personnel assistant in the scouting department. He was promoted to the role of college scout and was responsible for all of the Midwestern states.
Dawson, a third-round draft pick of the Kansas City Chiefs in 1994 who played four seasons in Kansas City, has been with the Titans since 2007 when he was hired as the director of pro scouting. He stayed in that role through 2010, was promoted to Vice President of Football Operations in 2011 and then moved into his current position in 2012. Dawson is involved in all aspects of putting together the Titans’ roster and oversees the scouting of college, NFL, CFL and other professional players while also assisting in contract negotiations.
Prior to coming to Tennessee, Dawson spent 2001-06 in the Seattle Seahawks organization, first as a pro personnel assistant from 2001-04 and then as Assistant Director of Pro Personnel from 2005-06. He has earned the reputation as a solid evaluator of talent and helped out together the Seahawks teams that won three consecutive NFC West crowns and reached Super Bowl XL.
After his fourth season as a wide receiver for the Chiefs, Dawson latched on with the Indianapolis Colts for parts of two seasons but injuries kept him off the field and forced his early retirement.
Hickey flourished as a college scout for Tampa Bay from 1998-2009 and kept working his way up in the organization by helping the front office procure some solid draft classes. Once he moved up the chain he began getting involved in more personnel moves and last year worked side by side with then-general manager Mark Dominik on some key free agent acquisitions.
The last two drafts that Hickey was directly involved produced cornerback Johnthan Banks, safety Mark Barron, running back Doug Martin and linebacker Lavonte David, all major contributors on the field for the Buccaneers.