Les Snead Becomes New General Manager of St Louis Rams

February 15, 2012

The St. Louis Rams have hired Les Snead as their new general manager, bringing in another front-office veteran as they try to ellevate the status of the falling franchise.

Snead spent the past 13 years with the Atlanta Falcons, the last three as director of player personnel. The Rams announced his hiring on Tuesday and planned an afternoon news conference.

The Rams are in the midst of an overhaul after winning just 15 games the past five seasons. They have the second overall pick in April’s draft after going 2-14 last season.

The Rams have already hired a new coach in Jeff Fisher. He replaces Steve Spagnuolo, who was fired along with general manager Billy Devaney after going 10-38 in three seasons.

Snead oversaw college and pro scouting efforts for the Falcons, and the team said he played a key role in evaluating not just talent but the salary value of all player acquisitions. Before he arrived in Atlanta, he worked in pro scouting for the Jaguars from 1995-97.

Snead is a former tight end for Auburn, and he later was an assistant for the Tigers. He holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a master’s degree in education.

Hanging over the Rams are questions about the franchise’s future in St. Louis.

The St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission unveiled a plan Feb. 1 that calls for $124 million in improvements to Edward Jones Dome in hopes of making sure the city doesn’t lose another NFL team.

The Rams’ lease with the commission requires the dome to be “first tier,” or among the top 25 percent of all NFL stadiums in several categories. If it falls short, Kroenke can move the franchise after the 2014 season.

The Rams have until March 1 to accept or reject the commission offer. They can also make a counter proposal. Arbitration would begin June 15 if no agreement is reached, and the arbitration process could last through the end of the year.

Rams also signed a three-year deal to allow one home game per year to be hosted in London.

by Ismail Uddin