Licht shines in personnel department

Posted by Darren Urban on January 10, 2013 – 10:44 am

Before the end of the regular season, it wasn’t just Steve Keim in the Cardinals’ personnel department that found his way into the rumormill of potential general manager hires around the league. It was also Jason Licht (pronounced “light”, so you see what I did in the headline there). Licht is the Cardinals’ director of player personnel. It was Licht, after all, who was a finalist for the Bears’ general manager job last year (it went to Phil Emery) before returning to the Cards’ front office after three seasons in New England.

Licht worked in Philadephia before the Cardinals hired him for the 2008 season, and after he made an impact and took the Super Bowl ride with the organization, he got the job with the Patriots. Keim loved the chemistry he had working with Licht that one season, however, and worked to find a way to get Licht back in Arizona. The way the jobs are filling up, it doesn’t look — despite that end-of-the-season conjecture — that Licht (below, left, with Keim) will be getting a general manager promotion anywhere. That means he will continue to work with the Cards’ new GM, Keim (perhaps, and this is conjecture too, with a promotion of his own) and that makes the Cards’ new boss very happy.

“I think if we have our say so he will be here,” Keim said. “Jason is a huge asset for us. Obviously we all know that he was the runner-up for the Bears GM job last year. I see him as a GM in his own right. I lean on Jason daily on a lot of different things. He is a talented, talented evaluator. He has got strong opinions.

“Sometimes he and I get in his office, we look at our roster, we look at our board and we don’t quite get into a full MMA match, but we have some disagreements. But I think that is a good thing, he is not afraid to tell me his opinion and I am not afraid to tell him mine. I think it is good to have some variances in grades and, like I said, at the end of the day when you have variances of opinion, it helps shake things out in the end and it is productive.”

Jason isn’t a small man, but I don’t know if I’d want to get into an MMA match with Keim. That said, it’s a good relationship that should benefit the Cardinals as they embark in this new version of the front office.


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17 Responses to “Licht shines in personnel department”

  1. By l.a. cardsmaniac on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    I hope these 2 weren’t behind many personnel decisions over the past few years, especially OL, last yrs 1st rd pick and the qb moves.

  2. By G. Witt on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    I hope they weren’t either.

  3. By Dynosoar on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    OK. so this is a repost of a thread but you’ll love the video so it’s worth it (sorry Cobra. HaHa.) It’s my birthday and this link is my gift to all of you. So enjoy my day, I will.

    Hey everyone,

    you’ve got to refresh this page until you get the Tide comercial across the bar at the top. There are little videos about the origin and evolution of the colors of most all the NFL teams. It’s way cool.

    I’d love to see a real throwback uniform to either the 20′s or the mid thirties uniform. The red uniform with the white across the shoulders and collar of the mid thirties looks spectatcular.

    So, which early uniform do y’all want to see as a throwback?

    Second post

    It’s fitting when the tide commercial for our team explains the change in logo to an angrier, more dominant and predatory Cardinal, they show Darnell getting set at the scrimage line. Y’all gotta see the video. I’m going to record it myself.

    From Darren,

    Dyno –

    RE: Cardinals colors video

  4. By Dynosoar on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    I have a few passions, my family, Cardinals and Volunteers football and fencing.

    Please enjoy this birthday treat from me to you. It’s titled “The Speed of Fencing” and I think y’all will enjoy it. I hope it’s acceptable to all of you for me to introduce (this one time only) something not Cardinals related, but just as enjoyable. (Darren, feel free to post this or not, I completely trust and accept your judgement and decision in this matter.)

    I’d love to post a video link of our wins over Atlanta, Carolina and Philadelphia from the 2009 season, but I don’t know where to find such video or I’d be watching them regularly. Jake Delhomme and I share a birthday. That year the Cardinals gave me the perfect birthday gift, Jake thought differently. 33-13, I miss those games.

  5. By Dynosoar on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply


    thanks for shedding a light on Licht. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

    I find the best production comes from people working together who respect each other’s differing opinions as much as their own opinions. That’s when real results happen because if I value my colleague’s opinion as much as mine and it’s different, then we both have to really dig in to find the truth/best solution. We also strengthen bonds of friendship through the process and obtain better results than if one of us just agrees and goes with the flow.

    (Did y’all know opinion has one “p”, at least my spell check thinks so.)

    I’m liking what I’m seeing.

    The Cardinals are in Phoenix and like the legendary bird; we flamed out last season meaning we’ll rise from the ashes to glory in the next season. Go Cards!

  6. By john the draft guy on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    So much of the draft has to do with who is going to be the HC. I would imagine that these guys have a very basic board, if any at all at this point.

    But assuming Mike McCoy gets the job and Ray Horton stays on as DC, it will be interesting which direction these two (licht and Keim) take us.

    McCoy is a former QB. He has been a QB coach and helped Jake Delholme during his playoff runs. He has been the OC in Denver for the last 3 years with 3 different offensive systems.

    But one thing stands out to me. The HC in Carolina is the current HC in Denver. Where ever John Fox goes, the team can run the ball. Look at McGahee’s resurgence the last two years.

    I think if McCoy is the guy, we can expect a commitment to the run. McCoy was able to run the ball even with Tebow as QB and 8 man fronts. Yes 8 man, no one respected the pass. I see him establishing a power run game here in AZ.

    Levi Brown is as powerful as anyone in the run game and Massie can move people too. Although I like Potter and think he can be a good LT, it would be interesting if they get Brown back over to LT.

    As for the draft, there are several guards that would fit in rounds 3-4. So to me, the perfect draft for McCoy would be getting him a QB, and running back.
    1st round; Tyler Wilson
    2nd round, Eddie Lacy
    Then start looking at the interior OLine.

    I really think we need a OLB who can get to the QB, but we can live another year with Acho and Groves/O Brien until Mr Clowney comes out of South Carolina next year. Oh Yeah, I’ll start banging that drum all year. Although, I don’t know how we can get the #1 pick to land him.

  7. By Mr Robles on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    Just outta curiosity Darren, would you have been considered the GM position? Knowing all the fan complaints & needs…

  8. By Darren Urban on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    Mr Robles —

    RE: GM

    I don’t know any of these guys, other than Keim. I wouldn’t know who would be the right guy. I think Keim can be good. But he’s like every hire — both GM and HC. No one really knows until they get a chance.

  9. By azfaninwa on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    I hope it bodes well that a former offensive lineman has ascended to that level. Perhaps our organization will give the line the weight it deserves going forward. Much like pawns in a chessgame… they only seem insignificant to those who don’t know to play. To those who play well they are all important.

  10. By Scott H on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    Hey, Darren….I have recently heard the name Marc Trestman mentioned in connection with the Eagles. Wasn’t he the O-coordinator here back in the Jake Plummer days ( or, at least some of them )??? Where has he been, the college ranks? haven’t heard his name in a long time.

  11. By Darren Urban on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    Scott H —

    RE: Trestman

    He has been in the CFL.

  12. By Christo on Jan 10, 2013 | Reply

    We could be in serious trouble if these 2 are / were responsible for the Brown’s, Wells, Floyd picks etc.

    God I hope we get a decent HC.

    Just about ready to cry with these ideas of Horton and his OC Kirby Wilson. Or even worse somehow Todd Haley! Are you kidding me?

  13. By Louisville Card on Jan 11, 2013 | Reply

    @john the draft guy

    Wilson is overrated he’s a product of Petrino’s system. I’m a big UofL fan and seen many years of Petrino making a qb look spectacular and then it not translating to the NFL. Both Brohm and Leflores have been big busts. When Wilson had John L coaching him another old UofL coach he was far from impressive. If qb is the first pick Geno would be the choice he is accurate with a big arm and will probably still be there at 7.

    If I had my choice of franchise qb’s the next couple of years I’m pocking Teddy Bridgewater . He’s mobile accurate, can make all the throws and is a leader. He’s won at least a share of the big east his first two years starting as a true freshman. If UofL had a better schedule next year they would be playing A & M for the title.

    I love the lacy pick though in round 2 that kid is going to be great.

  14. By Mike on Jan 11, 2013 | Reply

    This organization actually has a very good draft history over the past 5 years, which is why Keim was in line for a GM position. The organization didn’t ignore the O-line, per se, they just had/have a strategy of drafting the best player available. That’s what allows them to get great players like D Wash and C Campbell in the second round (not to mention we managed to get a starting right tackle with a 4th round pick and a solid back up left tackle with a 7th round pick. That’s unheard of.). So please, stop saying that we have bad drafts or don’t know how to evaluate players. It’s just not true. We are far better than average and Keim has a lot to do with that. If you want to disagree with the strategy, that’s a different story. GMs argue that all the time….

  15. By cobra on Jan 11, 2013 | Reply


    I agree, although we are headed in a different direction with a new HC. Time will tell. I really can’t see a major overhaul with the team next year, yet you never know? Myself, I hope they draft well, keep some things intact to have more cap space in 2104?

  16. By Chuck 1 on Jan 12, 2013 | Reply


    The Cards might have drafted some good DEFENSIVE players over the last few years, but what did they really NEED? A QB to supplement Anderson and then Kolb.

    Teams rarely find QBs that can step in and win games when they draft them in the 5th and 6th rounds.

    So, I give Graves, Keim and Whiz a grade of “F” for their failure to have a quality backup QB available in case Anderson or Kolb was ineffective or injured.

    A team without a talented backup QB usually can’t make the playoffs.

    We’ve seen what the Cards did over the last three years without a good B/U QB.

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