Billy Devaney, the Rams' Executive Vice President/Player Personnel, has been promoted to General Manager, the team announced today. The Rams also announced that John Shaw will give up his duties as team President and will be retained by the club as Senior Advisor/Owners' Representative.
Devaney, who has 23 years of NFL scouting experience, will be responsible for all player personnel decisions, including the college draft, acquisition of free agents, player trades and other personnel transactions. He will also be in charge of a search for a new Rams head coach, which will begin at the conclusion of the 2008 season.
"I am very grateful to Rams ownership for giving me this opportunity to help return the team to an elite position in the National Football League," Devaney said. "This is an organization that has historically had a winning tradition and it is our goal to get back to that level."
Devaney came to the Rams after two seasons with the Atlanta Falcons, as Senior Personnel Executive in 2006 and Assistant General Manager in 2007. During his NFL career, he has been associated with teams that earned three Super Bowl and 19 playoff game bids.
In his new capacity, Shaw will advise and consult with ownership and represent the club on virtually all league matters as well as other affairs significant to the team.
"I've been blessed to have worked for one of the great NFL franchises the last 29 years and had the good fortune of working with two terrific owners, Georgia Frontiere and Stan Kroenke," said Shaw. "I look forward to continuing my working relationship with Stan and welcome the opportunity to work with Chip (Rosenbloom) and Lucia (Rodriguez), both of whom I greatly respect and admire."
"One of the best things that happened to the Rams during this difficult season was the hiring of Billy Devaney to our front office team," said Rams Owner and Chairman Chip Rosenbloom. "We are very fortunate to have someone with Billy's character and intelligence taking control of the football side of this organization. Lucia, Stan and I look forward to working with Billy as the new General Manager of the Rams.
"While John Shaw has decided to no longer participate in the daily operation of running our team, we are extremely happy that he will be staying on as our representative for league matters and will continue to be involved as a trusted counsel to ownership," Rosenbloom said.
"John was like another son to my mother and their loyalty to one another is almost unheard of in modern sports. He fought the fight alongside her to move the team to St. Louis, which resulted in saving the team for the family and engineered the partnership agreement with our wonderful partner, Stan Kroenke, to help facilitate the move.
"I would like every fan in St. Louis to know that without John Shaw there is no St. Louis Rams. He is one of the most important and influential executives in the modern NFL," Rosenbloom continued. "He hired Dick Vermeil, then endured the slings and arrows along with my mom to give this legendary coach a chance to win a Super Bowl. John is a winner on and off the field and is like a family member to my sister and I as well as one of our closest friends. Although he is moving from the job of President, I cannot imagine continuing this journey without him."