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Some things to know about 49ers GM candidate George Paton

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George Paton for General Manager?

George Paton is presently the Assistant General Manager of the Minnesota Viking. I could not find an age for Paton but, based on the year he graduated from college, I would guess he is in his late 40s, and has been working in personnel and scouting for somewhere around 20 years.

George Paton played defensive back for the UCLA Bruins from 1988 to 1991 before playing professional football in Italy and Austria.

Paton started his NFL scouting career in the late 1990s with the Chicago Bears where he worked as a NFL Scout under the direction of then Director of Pro Personnel Rick Spielman. Paton then moved to the Miami Dolphins where he served as Director of Pro Personnel from 2001 to 2006. I would not call it a coincidence that he was once again reunited with Rick Spielman, who just happened to be the Vice President of Business Operations/Player Personnel with the Dolphins from 2000 to 2003 and General Manager in 2004.

Paton’s and Spielman continued their working relationship in Minnesota where Spielman worked as the Vice President of Player Personnel from 2006 to 2011 before being promoted to General Manager in 2012 while Paton joined the team as Director of Player Personnel in 2007 and was promoted to assistant General Manager after deciding not to take the General Manager Job with the Rams in 2012.

Patton has also turned down interviews in the past with the Jets, Bears and Lions, and interviewed with the Panthers in 2013.

Spielman had this to say about Paton at the time of his last promotion in 2012:

“His work ethic, leadership , professionalism and keen eye for identifying talented football players will continue to be a major asset for our organization as we take on the challenges of competing in the NFC North and winning the Super Bowl.”

The biggest question is; can Paton be successful without Rick Spielman being in the picture?