Darius Vinnett

AFC Staff Updates: Bills, Patriots, Browns

In the weeks following the 2024 NFL Draft, a number of teams have made changes to their player personnel staff and scouting departments. The Bills, for example, recently announced six updates to a scouting staff that should look fairly different in the coming season.

One of the updates we had seen reported days earlier by Neil Stratton of SucceedinFootball.com, who reported that long-time Cardinals area scout Darius Vinnett would be accepting a similar role in Buffalo. Vinnett had been in Arizona for 11 years and had won the Rod Graves College Scouting Award, given at the conclusion of the draft to the Cardinals’ best scout, in 2022. The team also added Vince Magri as a pro scout after having served most recently as the assistant general manager of the Toronto Argonauts in the Canadian Football League.

The rest of the moves were promotions to staffers already in place. Matt Bazirgan, formerly the Bills’ senior personnel executive, has been named director of college scouting. Asil Mulbah, whose pro scout position was filled by Magri, has been promoted to assistant director of pro scouting. Keith Jennings joins Vinnett as an area scout after previously working as the team’s BLESTO scout. Lastly, R.J. Webb, previously a pro scout, will now serve as a college scout and will take up Jennings’ former role as BLESTO scout.

Here are a few other scouting updates from around the AFC:

  • After establishing Eliot Wolf as the pinnacle of their personnel structure the Patriots have made a number of alterations to their staff. According to Stratton, pro scouting director Steve Cargile and area scout Taylor Redd will not be returning for the 2024 NFL season. Cargile had been with New England since 2011, while Redd had been around since 2018, meaning both were around for the team’s most recent Super Bowl victory. Replacing Redd will be new area scout Casey Belongia, previously of the Jaguars. Belongia started his career as an equipment manager for the Packers, residing in Green Bay at the same time as Wolf.
  • Lastly, the Browns are bringing Josh Lucas back to the game as their Mid-Atlantic area scout, per Stratton. Lucas had spent the past two years away from the game of football after serving as the Bears director of player personnel. Prior to his time in Chicago, Lucas had been an area scout for the Saints for 10 years and an intern in Jacksonville.

NFL Front Office Updates: Titans, Browns, Eagles, Cardinals, Bears

We mentioned yesterday how a number of teams who have seen changes in the leadership of their front office may be making changes following the NFL Draft. These teams needed their staff at the time, with only weeks leading up to the draft, but with that process now over, the new leadership has started making changes.

The Titans are one such team making changes in recent days. One change is the apparent departure of college scout Tom Roth, who no longer appears on the team’s website, according to Neil Stratton of SucceedinFootball.com. Roth had spent the last six years in Tennessee after serving 14 years as a college scout for the Bills.

It’s not all departures, like yesterday. Stratton noticed two promotions in Tennessee’s front office, as well. Previously the team’s pro scouting coordinator, Rob Riederer now appears on the team’s website as assistant director of football strategy. Likewise, Bryce Wasserman has been promoted from manager of football strategy to chief of staff of football strategy.

Here are a few other updates in player personnel offices around the league:

  • The Browns also see a departure, per Stratton, with Joe Dever reportedly not returning to the team for 2024. Joining the team as a scouting intern in 2019, Dever had spent five years with Cleveland. He had risen to the position of mid-Atlantic scout before his departure.
  • The Eagles are also losing a longtime staffer, according to Stratton. A 15-year veteran of the NFL, Brad Obee will use the expiration of his contract with Philadelphia as a reason to pursue new opportunities in the NFL. Obee began his scouting career on the personnel staff of the Eagles in 2009, working his way up the ladder for six years. He left to serve as a pro scout for the Bears for the next six years before ultimately returning to Philadelphia as a college/pro scout for the past three.
  • The Cardinals, who we noted lost a personnel staffer in yesterday’s post, will also part ways with area scout Darius Vinnett, per Stratton. Vinnett’s contract was expiring, as well, and though Arizona offered him an extension to return in 2024, Vinnett has declined and will seek other opportunities.
  • Lastly, the Bears are moving forward without area scouts Drew Raucina and Sam Summerville, according to Stratton. Raucina is a holdover from the Ryan Pace-era, serving the last six years with the team. He had previously been a combine scout for the NFL. Summerville’s departure is a bit more surprising. He had been with Chicago since 2012 and was voted the BART List as one of the NFC’s best scouts in 2022, per Stratton. He was also named NFC Scout of the Year in 2019. Regardless, general manager Ryan Poles is making changes for the 2024 NFL season.