The Detroit Lions continued the process of interviewing for their vacant general manager job by concluding an interview with New Orleans Saints vice president/assistant general manager and college scouting director Jeff Ireland.
Ireland is in his fifth season in the Saints personnel department. In 2017, he led a Saints draft effort that included Marshon Lattimore, Ryan Ramczyk, Marcus Williams and Alvin Kamara. Lattimore and Kamara became the first rookie duo from the same team since 1967 to sweep the AP Defensive and Offensive Rookie of the Year awards and the first Saints rookie duo to be selected to the Pro Bowl. Eight Saints players he's helped acquire through the draft, free agency and trades have accounted for a total of 14 Pro Bowl selections.
Ireland served as an area scout for the NFL Scouting Combine from 1994-1996 before becoming a scout for Kansas City from 1997-2000. He became a national scout for the Dallas Cowboys in 2001. He was promoted to vice president of college and pro scouting for the Cowboys in 2005, a role he held in Dallas for three seasons.
Ireland was named Miami's general manager in 2008 and held that role through the 2013 season. In 2008, Ireland's first season in Miami, the Dolphins (11-5) became the first team in NFL history to make the playoffs after only winning one game the previous season. Miami won no more than seven games in the next four seasons, however, and the Dolphins and Ireland mutually parted ways after an 8-8 season in 2013.
Ireland was a draft consultant for Seattle in 2015, before joining the Saints in 2015.
Ireland graduated from Baylor, where he handled placekicking duties from 1988-1991, finishing third on the school's all-time scoring list. His 45 career field goals established a school record. He was selected as the South team's kicker in the 1992 Senior Bowl.