Polian boasts 24 years of NFL scouting and personnel experience, including three seasons as the Indianapolis Colts’ vice president and general manager. He takes a title last held by Alex Santos, but his role could differ in Washington’s new front-office structure. Santos was fired in July after he was accused of making inappropriate advances toward female employees and two female sportswriters.
Polian, 49, most recently spent seven seasons (2013-19) as director of pro personnel for the Jacksonville Jaguars and helped acquire Pro Bowl honorees Calais Campbell, Malik Jackson and A.J. Bouye. He began his NFL career with the Carolina Panthers, as a personnel assistant from 1994 to 1997, then joined the Colts, starting as director of pro scouting (1998-2000) before moving up to assistant director of football operations (2001-03), assistant GM/football operations (2004), VP of football operations (2005-09), and VP and GM (2009-11). He was an executive scout for the Atlanta Falcons in 2012.
A New York native and graduate of John Carroll University, Polian is the son of Bill Polian, a former NFL executive and Pro Football Hall of Famer. Bill Polian was GM of the Buffalo Bills when they drafted Mayhew in the 10th round in 1988, and he was later GM of the Panthers and Colts during his son’s tenure with each team. (Bill was the Colts’ president when Chris was their GM.) In the Polians’ 13 seasons together in Indianapolis, the Colts compiled a 143-81 regular season record with seven division titles and a win in Super Bowl XLI after the 2006 season.