Article written by Chuck Newman, Inquirer Staff Writer, 7/6/94
Former NFL scout with the Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, and the Houston Texans
Chuck Banker was a scout with the Washington Redskins when Plan B, a limited form of free agency, was introduced into the NFL in 1989. At the time, the Redskins were in transition at the general manager’s position, from Bobby Beathard to Charley Casserly. “The change didn’t affect us,” Banker said. “We were completely prepared; we knew who we wanted. When that (Plan B) list came out in February, we had a file on everybody.”
That was how an effective NFL organization works. Yesterday, the Eagles took a step toward structuring their front office in a similar fashion when they named Banker, 53, as their new director of pro personnel. He assumes the title previously held by Tom Gamble, the son of Harry Gamble, the team’s president and chief operating officer. Banker will work with general manager John Wooten, the club’s vice president of player personnel, and Tom Gamble, now a pro scout under Banker. At the same time, the Eagles announced that Joe Banner, 41, the right-hand man of owner Jeff Lurie, would assume the title of vice president of the club.
Banker’s appointment brings the Eagles’ player personnel department up to six people, two above its highest point under former owner Norman Braman. And Banner said that additional help is still being sought for the collegiate scouting staff. The Redskins had eight people on their front-office personnel staff. Banker is a 13-year NFL veteran, having been a special-teams coach with the Redskins and Cardinals. He had been a pro scout in Washington since 1989. He was an assistant coach with the Cardinals from 1980 to 1985, then spent the 1987 and 1988 seasons as a special-teams coach under Redskins coach Joe Gibbs before moving to the front office. He has two Super Bowl rings from Washington.
Banker said that during his job interviews he had mentioned to Lurie that the Eagles’ front office was undermanned compared with other organizations in the league. “With the salary cap in place and with free agency being what it is today, a key way to increase your chances of winning championshiips is to be the best at gathering and evaluating information on player personnel, both on the college and pro level,” Lurie said in a statement. “The addition of a widely respected football man and talent evaluator like Chuck Banker to the pro-scouting side undoubtedly makes us a better club, but we are not through yet as we still intend to add scouts on the college side.” Casserly put his stamp of approval on Banker. “Chuck has been an integral part of our success in Washington, contributing in the areas of both pro and college scouting,” he said.