Kyle Smith

Falcons Denied Kyle Smith Permission To Interview For Bills’ Assistant GM Job

Brian Gaine ended up replacing Joe Schoen as the Bills’ assistant general manager, but the team did interview outside candidates. Buffalo attempted to meet with another, according to Brandon Beane, but was denied the opportunity.

The Bills identified Falcons vice president of player personnel Kyle Smith as a candidate for their assistant GM post, according to’s Michael Rothstein (on Twitter). The Falcons denied Smith permission to meet with the Bills, leading to Gaine’s promotion.

While Gaine may well have been promoted regardless of Smith’s availability, the Falcons used an NFL rule to ensure Terry Fontenot‘s top lieutenant remained in Atlanta. Since Smith is classified as Fontenot’s second-in-command, Buffalo’s assistant GM gig was considered a lateral move. That opened the door for the Falcons to block the Bills from meeting with the western New York native.

The Falcons hired Smith shortly after Fontenot took over last year. He had previously spent several years with Washington, finishing out his time there as the team’s VP of player personnel. The young exec ran multiple drafts for the team, which was without a traditional GM for a stretch, but left ahead of Ron Rivera‘s second year in the nation’s capital.

Buffalo now has Gaine, Terrance Gray and Matt Bazirgan positioned in high-ranking posts under Beane, who has lost a few top staffers over the past two offseasons. The Giants hired Schoen as their GM, and Schoen took ex-Dolphins GM Dennis Hickey with him. Buffalo lost Dan Morgan last year, when he became Carolina’s assistant GM. The Bills interviewed former Steelers staffer Brandon Hunt for the assistant GM job this year, but he is now with the Eagles, joining a team that lost four staffers to assistant GM roles this year.

Falcons Add Kyle Smith To Front Office

Kyle Smith will go from being a key lieutenant in Washington’s power structure to playing a similar role in Atlanta. The Falcons hired the young executive as its VP of player personnel.

While Smith will move from having the same job title in Washington, he will become the Falcons’ top-ranking executive behind new GM Terry Fontenot. Washington hired Martin Mayhew as GM and Marty Hurney as its executive VP earlier this month, lowering Smith’s standing in an organization that has given HC Ron Rivera considerable power. Smith, 36, will now play an integral role in Atlanta’s new regime.

Other teams were interested in Smith, according to Nicki Jhabvala of the Washington Post, who adds one year remained on his Washington contract. Washington did not interview Smith for its GM post, per Jhabvala, who adds Smith and Rivera were not believed to be on bad terms during their short stay together. But the team did interestingly meet with Eric Stokes, who worked under Smith as director of pro personnel in Washington’s previous front office setup.

Washington, which hired Smith in 2010, promoted him to VP of player personnel last year. The team did not hire a GM in Rivera’s first season. Well respected for his draft acumen, Smith figures to be a GM candidate in the not-too-distant future.

Longest-Tenured GMs In The NFL

When we ran down the longest-tenured head coaches in the NFL, we found that less than half of the league’s current coaches have been in their positions for more than three years. That’s not quite the case with general managers, but there have been plenty of changes in recent years.

A handful of general managers have gotten to take their coats off and stay for a long while. Among coaches, Bill Belichick had joined his team prior to 2003. Here, you’ll see that five GMs have been with their teams since before ’03 (Belichick, of course, is also on this list). Two of those five – Jerry Jones and Mike Brown – are outliers, since they’re team owners and serve as de facto GMs. But the Patriots, Steelers, and Saints, have all had the same general managers making their roster decisions for well over a decade.

Here’s the complete list of the NFL’s longest-tenured GMs, along with the date they took over the job:

  1. Jerry Jones (Dallas Cowboys): April 18, 1989[1]
  2. Mike Brown (Cincinnati Bengals): August 5, 1991[2]
  3. Bill Belichick (New England Patriots): January 27, 2000[3]
  4. Kevin Colbert (Pittsburgh Steelers): February 18, 2000[4]
  5. Mickey Loomis (New Orleans Saints): May 14, 2002
  6. Rick Spielman (Minnesota Vikings): May 30, 2006[5]
  7. Thomas Dimitroff (Atlanta Falcons): January 13, 2008
  8. John Schneider (Seattle Seahawks): January 19, 2010[6]
  9. Howie Roseman (Philadelphia Eagles): January 29, 2010
  10. John Elway (Denver Broncos): January 5, 2011[7]
  11. Les Snead (St. Louis Rams): February 10, 2012
  12. David Caldwell (Jacksonville Jaguars): January 8, 2013
  13. Steve Keim (Arizona Cardinals): January 8, 2013
  14. Tom Telesco (San Diego Chargers): January 9, 2013
  15. Jason Licht (Tampa Bay Buccaneers): January 21, 2014
  16. Ryan Pace (Chicago Bears): January 8, 2015
  17. Chris Grier (Miami Dolphins): January 4, 2016
  18. Bob Quinn (Detroit Lions): January 8, 2016
  19. Jon Robinson (Tennessee Titans): January 14, 2016
  20. John Lynch (San Francisco 49ers): January 29, 2017
  21. Chris Ballard (Indianapolis Colts): January 30, 2017
  22. Brandon Beane (Buffalo Bills): May 9, 2017
  23. Brett Veach (Kansas City Chiefs): July 11, 2017
  24. Marty Hurney (Carolina Panthers): July 19, 2017
  25. Dave Gettleman (New York Giants): December 28, 2017
  26. Brian Gutekunst (Green Bay Packers): January 7, 2018
  27. Mike Mayock (Oakland Raiders): December 31, 2018
  28. Joe Douglas (New York Jets): June 7, 2019
  29. Eric DeCosta (Baltimore Ravens): January 7, 2019[8]
  30. Ron Rivera (Washington Redskins): January 1, 2020[9]
  31. Andrew Berry (Cleveland Browns): January 27, 2020
  32. Bill O’Brien (Houston Texans): January 28, 2020


  1. Jones has been the Cowboys’ de facto general manager since former GM Tex Schramm resigned in April 1989.
  2. Brown has been the Bengals’ de facto GM since taking over as the team’s owner in August 1991.
  3. Belichick has been the Patriots’ de facto GM since shortly after being hired as the team’s head coach in January 2000.
  4. Colbert was initially hired as the team’s director of football operations and received the newly-created general manager title in 2011.
  5. Spielman was initially hired as the team’s VP of player personnel and received the GM title in 2012.
  6. While Schneider holds the title of GM, head coach Pete Carroll has the final say on roster moves for the Seahawks.
  7. Elway was initially hired as the team’s executive VP of football operations and received the GM title in 2014.
  8. In 2018, the Ravens announced that DeCosta would replace Ozzie Newsome as GM for Ozzie Newsome after the conclusion of the season. The Ravens’ ’18 season ended with their Wild Card loss to the Chargers on 1/6/19.
  9. Technically, the Redskins do not have a GM, as of this writing. Rivera is, effectively, their GM, working in tandem with Vice President of Player Personnel Kyle Smith. Smith may receive the GM title in the near future.

Redskins To Hire GM After Draft

The Redskins are expected to go into the NFL Draft without a GM, Ian Rapoport of (on Twitter) hears. Without a replacement lined up for Bruce Allen, Redskins VP of Player Personnel Kyle Smith will be in charge of draft operations in April.

The Redskins canned Allen on Dec. 30, after ten years at the helm. In that span, the Redskins went 62-97-1 and made the playoffs only twice.

The Redskins’ next GM likely won’t have complete control over the 53-man roster. New head coach Ron Rivera is expected to have significant sway when it comes to personnel, which could dissuade some of the league’s more experienced candidates.

Allen wasn’t the only significant front office figure to exit D.C. this offseason. In the wake of Allen’s dismissal, senior VP Eric Schaffer was expected to see an increased role. Instead, they parted ways with the cap guru after nearly two decades together.

Rapoport hears similar news for the Panthers – their assistant GM job will also be filled sometime after the draft. The Panthers made a run at hiring Andrew Berry, but the Eagles blocked them because the position did not include roster control. Ultimately, Berry became the Browns’ new GM, where he’ll have say over the 53-man roster.

Redskins Promote Kyle Smith To VP Of Player Personnel

The Redskins continue to shake up their front office. Washington has promoted Kyle Smith to vice president of player personnel, per a team announcement.

Smith, who served as the Redskins’ director of college personnel for the past three seasons, will assume the role that Doug Williams held before his recent reassignment to a non-personnel position. When new Washington head coach Ron Rivera spoke to reporters at his introductory press conference, he spoke highly of the club’s last three draft classes, which Smith oversaw.

Smith, 35, has spent 10 seasons with Washington and has long been mentioned as a future GM candidate. In his new role, he will oversee both the college and pro personnel aspects of the front office.

Recent reports have indicated that the Redskins will seek a new GM after the draft, though JP Finlay of NBC Sports Washington suggests that, if Smith performs well over the next few months, Washington may forego such a hire and move forward with its present structure.

Smith, the son of former Chargers GM A.J. Smith, has received high praise from Rivera — who worked with the elder Smith during his time with the Bolts — and Redskins owner Dan Snyder.

“Kyle Smith has put in the work over the last 10 seasons and has proven to be a skilled talent evaluator,” Snyder said. Rivera added, “I have been impressed with Kyle’s track record and player evaluation process, and I’m confident in the vision we share for the future of the Washington Redskins.”

East Rumors: Redskins, Jets, Collins, Pats

One of the candidates to work as the Redskins‘ starting left guard may not be able to factor into that competition. Arie Kouandjio is believed to have suffered a torn quadriceps muscle, JP Finlay of NBC Sports Washington reports. Kouandjio’s season is now in jeopardy, per Finlay, who notes this injury could sideline him for the rest of 2018. Despite not making the Redskins’ 53-man roster out of camp, Kouandjio started the final six games for Washington at guard after the Redskins signed him off the Ravens’ practice squad. The 2015 Washington fourth-round pick made two starts in 2016 as well. Washington re-signed Shawn Lauvao, and Finlay notes it’s uncertain if Kouandjio suffered this significant malady before or after that agreement occurred. The 30-year-old Lauvao’s been the Redskins’ primary left guard since the 2014 season. The team also drafted Louisville tackle Geron Christian and still has Ty Nsekhe in the backup mix.

Here’s the latest from the East divisions:

  • Cowboys third-year starter Maliek Collins underwent foot surgery on Monday, Todd Archer of reports. He broke a bone in his foot last week. Dallas’ goal is for its first-unit defensive tackle to be ready by the end of training camp and hopefully be in line to play in Week 1, per Archer. Collins underwent a similar foot operation in January and underwent a foot procedure in the 2016 offseason as well.
  • Lorenzo Mauldin missed all of the 2017 season because of a back injury, and Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News notes there’s an increasing feeling at Jets headquarters the outside linebacker will be a training camp cut. The 2015 third-round pick has made four starts since entering the league. That said, the Jets are thin at edge rusher post-draft. They re-signed David Bass this offseason and added other possible depth pieces in Kevin Pierre-Louis and Brandon Copeland.
  • Sean McVay‘s departure appears to have helped influence the Redskins to protect another young decision-maker. The franchise recently jettisoned longtime scout Scott Campbell, and Rich Tandler of NBC Sports Washington notes that 34-year-old exec Kyle Smith ran this year’s draft after Campbell held that responsibility in 2017. The Redskins are envisioning Smith playing a big role for the franchise in the coming years, per Tandler. Smith is the son of former Chargers GM A.J. Smith.
  • The Patriots will bring in martial arts expert Joe Kim to help as a pass-rushing consultant, Ben Volin of the Boston Globe reports. Kim’s consulted with 10 teams in the past, most recently with the 2016 Browns, but his first NFL job was with Bill Belichick when he was the original Browns’ head coach in 1992.