Trust factor at work in trade, scout's move

The relationship between Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers counterpart, Mark Dominik, played a role in the recent Kellen Winslow trade.

Schneider said so during subsequent interviews, and it makes sense.

Any team seeking to acquire a player wants general assurances it knows what it's getting. And while Dominik would of course put his own team's interests first, a GM might speak more frankly with a counterpart he knows and trusts.

That trust works both ways. A week after getting a late-round conditional draft choice for Winslow, the Bucs acquired their new college scouting director from Schneider's personnel department in Seattle. Eric Stokes, a former Seahawks safety, is leaving for Tampa Bay.

"Most recently, Stokes worked as the Seahawks' assistant director of college scouting (2010-11), during which time he was instrumental in bringing in the likes of defensive standouts Earl Thomas (first round, 2010), Kam Chancellor (fifth round, 2010), K.J. Wright (fourth round, 2011) and Richard Sherman (fifth round, 2011)," the Bucs said.

Personnel departments are largely set. The St. Louis Rams overhauled theirs. The Arizona Cardinals brought back Jason Licht, who had been with New England.