Well, it looks like the Vikings have decided on their new General Manager- Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, who is currently VP of Football Operations for the Cleveland Browns.
Ian Rapoport reports that after the Bears are in the process of finalizing a deal for one of the Vikings two finalists for their GM vacancy, Ryan Poles with the Chiefs, that leaves Adofo-Mensah as the sole remaining available finalist and presumably who they will sign as their next General Manager, replacing the departed Rick Spielman.
Kwesi Adofo-Mensah is meeting with various departments in Minnesota today and scheduled to be done with his in person interview round before 5 pm. If he’s the guy for the Vikings, which it certainly looks like, Minnesota would be hard pressed to let him leave w/out an offer.— Courtney Cronin (@CourtneyRCronin) January 25, 2022
Kwesi Adofo-Mensah, 40, has an analytical background who began his career on Wall Street as a commodities trader and portfolio manager after graduating from Princeton with a degree in economics and a masters degree in economics from Stanford.
He is said to be heavy into analytics, as his background would suggest, from managing the salary cap to using a data-driven approach to finding talent.
Prior to his position with the Browns, Adofo-Mensah was manager and director of football research and development for the 49ers, from 2013-2019.
Browns GM Andrew Berry, who stole him from the 49ers and promoted him to VP of Football Operations, had this to say about Adofo-Mensah:
“No. 1, it’s his general cognitive abilities. He’s a super, super bright guy, and that comes across within the first two minutes that you meet him.
“No. 2, and probably just as importantly, it’s just people skills. You could see how he had been able to build relationships across a number of different groups during his time at San Francisco in a role that can be very challenging, because you have to be able to not only develop (analytic) insights, but communicate them and get people to buy in. And then the other thing was just his breadth of understanding of the sport and football operations. So even though he had formally just led the 49ers’ research group, you could tell that he understood team building, people, relationships and managerial skills at a much higher level.”
Clearly the Vikings are getting a very smart guy as their next general manager, should they complete a contract in the coming days, as expected.
Of course the first item on the to-do list for Adofo-Mensah will be to weigh in on who the next head coach should be. Given his background with the 49ers, does that mean he could favor a 49ers defensive coordinator named DeMeco Ryans as the next head coach? Maybe.
If the Vikings hire Kwesi Adofo-Mensah as GM today, it's important to note that he hasn't "packaged" himself with a coaching candidate in interviews. I think he'll be open-minded. But hard not to connect him with 49ers DC DeMeco Ryans.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) January 25, 2022
Adofo-Mensah and Ryans were together in SF.