With Falcons GM Thomas Dimitroff recently admitting that the 2012 draft was awful, it makes sense that the team would be attempting to bring in more experience to help with the draft and free agency. Former GMs Ruston Webster and Phil Emery - of the Titans and Bears respectively - have been hired as national scouts for the team. Reasonably, Falcons fans may be wondering how each performed as GMs for their teams.
Here's a look at how Emery did in his time with the Bears.
Unfortunately, this is going to be a pretty short list. Out of the 2012 draft, second round pick Alshon Jeffery has worked out very well for the Bears. From the 2013 draft, first round pick Kyle Long has consistently been one of the Bears best offensive lineman every year. Seventh round wide receiver Marquess Wilson has gotten better every year, turning in a decent 2015. That's pretty solid value out of a 7th rounder.
In his last draft with the bears in 2014, Emery got CB Kyle Fuller in the first round. Fuller played decently in 2015 and looks to be on the upswing. The Bears also got punter Pat O'Donnell in the 6th round, and he has been a good played for them. And yes, I just had to highlight a 6th round punter as a "success." Seventh round tackle Charles Leno Jr started quite a few games in 2015, but wasn't particularly good. I guess that's a tepid success, since he was a seventh rounder.
To be frank, this list is basically everyone else Emery ever drafted. Shea McClellin - their first round pick in 2012 - has yet to live up to his first round billing. Their third round pick - safety Brandon Hardin - never played a snap. The rest of the 2012 class isn't even in the league now (sound familiar?).
From the 2013 draft, second rounder Jonathan Bostic never lived up to the billing and finished 2015 as a backup on the Patriots. Fourth rounder Khaseem Green also didn't work out and isn't in the league anymore. Fifth round tackle Jordan Mills stayed around for a couple of years, but was not good when he was there. Sixth rounder Cornelius Washington is still on the team, but has had little impact.
In his final draft class, 2nd round pick Ego Ferguson has been disappointing so far and was suspended for four games in 2015 due to PED violations. Third rounder Will Sutton has been disappointing so far, while fourth round running back Ka'deem Carey has not amassed more than 200 yards in a season yet. Fourth round safety Brock Vereen showed promise as a rookie, but was cut in September 2015. Sixth round QB David Fales has been on/off the roster, but couldn't beat Jimmy Clausen out for a spot on the roster.
Free Agency Success
Emery had more luck in free agency in his time with the Bears. In 2012, he brought in Eric Weems and traded for Brandon Marshall. In 2013, he secured tight end Martellus Bennett and OT Jermon Bushrod. His 2014 foray into free agency was pretty good, signing DE Jared Allen, DE/OLB Lamarr Houston, DE/OLB Willie Young and WR Josh Morgan.
Free Agency Failures
In 2012, the Bears brought in Michael Bush on a 4 year deal worth $14 million. Though he would be on the team in 2012 and 2013, he never lived up to the contract. Other than that, there were no "major" blunders in free agency.
The Final Results
Reviewing the Bears draft classes, it's clear why Emery was out of a job after just 3 years. Out of those 3 draft classes, the Bears only got 2 - maybe 3 - quality starters out of it. Quite a few players are not only not on the team, many of them aren't even in the NFL anymore. While his forays into free agency were more successful, the Bears were a consistently mediocre team during the three years he was in charge.
Hopefully, Emery can re-establish himself as a scout and show why he was given the GM opportunity in the first place.