"It's been in the works for a long time," said Saints owner Tom Benson Thursday afternoon at a press conference. Benson has, for the short term at least, assumed the role of general manager.
Mueller was entering the final year of a three-year contract that paid him in the lower ranks of all NFL executives.
When asked if this came as a shock, Mueller said, "I am very surprised by this. I thought everything was going well." Apparently not Randy.
Fan reaction has been that Benson made a huge mistake, but internally, other staff members confirmed to SaintsInsider.com that it is a huge relief that it is finally done and they are excited about moving on.
Benson made it clear that he expected he and Mueller communicate better, but it wasn't done as Benson had wanted. He also stated that he wants Jim Haslett to remain head coach here for a "long time."
Benson stated in a press conference this afternoon that Mueller's management that the decision "had nothing to do with money, it was the management style," and that the decision was not made "overnight." The final decision was made in the past few days.
Benson also made it clear that the Saints fron office will take on a new look. It wasn't made clear what that new look will be, but in all liklihood, there will be no General Manager. It appears the Saints will run it's football operations similar to that of the Raiders, with Benson being the President CEO and a number of Senior executives below him.
Today, Harold Richardson, GM of the Falcons, quit citing he wanted to explore other NFL job openings. Mueller is said to be the top candidate for the job in Atlanta along with Bobby Beathard. Mueller may also be a candidate in Seattle where Mike Holmgren is clearly under fire.
More public reaction coming soon, as well has some internal reaction to this move.