Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Could Jimmy's Next Draft Job Come as GM?

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Could Jimmy's Next Draft Job Come as GM?

Article excerpt

Byline: Mark Woods, Times-Union sports columnist

It's hard to pick a moment that best summed up the absurdity of the NFL Draft weekend.

But if forced to select one, I go with Sunday afternoon, when ESPN prepared to switch its coverage over to ESPN2. It was time for Jimmy Johnson, the newest member of ESPN's draft team, to leave. So ESPN decided this called for a tribute, complete with "highlights" of the two days.

It reminded me of the time Conan O'Brien kept coming back from commercial breaks and doing "anniversary specials" about what had happened with the first guest that night. The 5-minute anniversary special! The 15-minute anniversary special! And so on.

This was the 28 Hours After Jimmy's Debut special. Remember when Jimmy responded to shots fired at him by pointing to the Super Bowl ring on his finger? Remember when Jimmy and Mel went hair-to-hair? Remember Joe Theismann? Not really. Not after a vintage Jimmy debut.

When the highlights wrapped up and the camera came back to Johnson, he shook his head and grinned, then headed into the stands to share some nachos with fans. And although his deal said he was done, free to head back to the Keys, he looked like someone who kind of wanted to stay. Which raises The Question.

Would he come back?

There was one point Sunday when Johnson almost sounded as if he were making a sales pitch for himself. He had just finished gushing about the job Tom Coughlin is doing in Jacksonville when someone brought up the coach/general manager debate.

Johnson, of course, always fought to be both. He recalled meeting with Wayne Weaver when the Jaguars' owner was putting together the franchise and saying, "If you've got the right head coach, he should be in total control."

Johnson explained that he has since changed his mind, that he thinks it's too much for one man to handle and inevitably leads to burnout. …

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