Chris Ballard and Eliot Wolf aren’t the only former San Francisco 49ers general manager candidates interviewing with the Indianapolis Colts. The Colts released their list of interviews and along with Wolf and Ballard are a few familiar names:
Chris Ballard - Kansas City Chiefs
Scott Fitterer - Seattle Seahawks
Trent Kirchner - Seattle Seahawks
George Paton - Minnesota Vikings
Jimmy Raye III - Indianapolis Colts
Eliot Wolf - Green Bay Packers
That list almost looks like a copy and paste job from the 49ers. All of these names were attached to the organization at some point in the search. The Colts did also reportedly inquire about Baltimore Ravens executive Eric DeCosta, but were turned down.
Chris Ballard never had an interview with the organization due to Kansas City blocking the request. While it’s not known if Ballard or the Chiefs were the ones putting the kibosh on that, it’s worth noting the Chiefs were in the playoffs at the time and could block it on those grounds.
Fitterer and Kirchner interviewed with Seahawks offensive line coach Tom Cable potentially being tied to them as a head coach candidate. They withdrew their names around the same time Cable did.
Paton is the current front runner for the 49ers general manager job and will meet with the 49ers and Kyle Shanahan later this week.
Jimmy Raye III interviewed and that was pretty much it.
Eliot Wolf was considered a potential replacement to Trent Baalke in the mid-season, but stepped aside as the 49ers search got deeper. He took a pay raise and stayed in Green Bay.
Some of the names dropped once they knew they weren’t going to get the gig, others removed themselves for reasons we may never find out. There was speculation it was the rumored roster control Shanahan will get or they just didn’t trust the 49ers organization, but nothing concrete has been found. Regardless, the Colts will get their chance to sell themselves to the candidates as well. If one of them takes the job, I’m sure there will be a question at the introductory press conference of why the Colts over the 49ers. The answer may be a smoke screen, but you never know.