PHILADELPHIA ( - Highly-regarded Eagles vice president of player personnel Joe Douglas is on the radar of the Houston Texans.

The Texans are in need of a new general manager because Rick Smith recently took a year-long leave of absence to help care for his wife Tiffany, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer.

Beyond that Smith and head coach Bill O'Brien have often clashed in recent years. The new GM in Houston will have "full authority over personnel," according to reports and if that holds up the Eagles will likely not be able to prevent Douglas from moving on to South Texas.

Because he's under contract Philadelphia could block Douglas from any lateral move which in NFL parlance means if Douglas is not offered control over the 53-man roster with the Texans the Eagles could keep him in-house.

The Eagles can, however, prevent Douglas from interviewing until their season is over.

According to the Houston Chronicle's John McClain, Douglas is one of six potential candidates in play along with Cowboys VP of player personnel Will McClay,  Bills VP of player personnel Brian Gaine, who was in Houston previously, Patriots VP of player personnel Nick Caserio, Texans' current VP of football operations/assistant GM Jimmy Raye and Green Bay director of player personnel Brian Gutekunst.

Houston owner Bob McNair said this week the new prospective GM will have "control of personnel and all that entails," the same as Smith had, answering only to McNair and vice chairman Cal McNair.

The McNairs, team president Jamey Rootes and O'Brien will make up a four-man search committee looking for the best candidate and interviews are set to begin next week.

The Eagles originally hired Douglas in May of 2016 to take over the day-to-day operations of the personnel department and he quickly revamped the scouting side of the organization with his hand-picked lieutenant, assistant director of player personnel Andy Weidl.

Douglas began his ascent as a longtime part of Ozzie Newsome's respected front office in Baltimore before a short stay in Chicago preceded his arrival in South Philadelphia.

When Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie did a 180 and pulled the plug on Chip Kelly, allowing executive vice president of football operations Howie Roseman to return to the football side of the organization from exile, one of the conditions was hiring a proven personnel evaluator.

Unlike Kelly and Roseman, who feuded with Kelly originally winning a power struggle before proving ill-prepared to handle personnel matters, to date Roseman and Douglas have worked well together, rebuilding the team in short order.

-John McMullen covers the Eagles and the NFL for You can reach him at or on Twitter @JFMcMullen

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