Kelly Kleine Joins Broncos; Believed to Be Highest-Ranking Woman Ever in NFL Scouting

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVMay 17, 2021

HOUSTON, TX - DECEMBER 08: A Denver Broncos logo is embossed on a ball prior to game against the Houston Texans on December 8, 2019 at NRG Stadium in Houston, TX. (Photo by John Rivera/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
John Rivera/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Denver Broncos have hired Kelly Kleine to serve as the executive director of football operations/special advisor to the general manager, the team announced Monday. 

General manager George Paton released the following statement on the hiring:

"Kelly is a rising star in the NFL, and we're fortunate to add someone of her caliber to the Denver Broncos. Having worked with her for nine years in Minnesota, Kelly has a strong understanding of all aspects of football operations and player evaluation along with outstanding leadership qualities. She will be a tremendous resource with her experience on the pro and college sides as well as her knowledge of our grading scale and football calendar."

With her hiring, Kleine is believed to be the highest-ranking woman in an NFL scouting department in league history. 

Per the Broncos' press release, Kleine will serve as a "primary liaison for the team's football operations while also holding significant responsibilities in both pro and college scouting." 

Responsibilities will include "player evaluation, day-to-day football administration and preparation for the NFL Draft and free agency," along with overseeing the video and equipment departments. 

Mike Klis @MikeKlis

Not only will Kelly Kleine scout for the Broncos, it's just as significant she will run two football departments, video and equipment.<br>Could Kleine become the NFL's first woman GM? #9sports https://t.co/9flYu1849m

Benjamin Solak @BenjaminSolak

Kelly Kleine was a PR person for the Vikings before taking a scouting internship and just learning the whole profession. Extremely cool stuff. https://t.co/G9FIZJSpgV

Kleine spent the previous 10 years with the Minnesota Vikings, rising to the position of manager of player personnel/college scout the past two seasons. She also served as a college scouting coordinator (2015-18), scouting assistant (2014) and scouting administration intern (2013).