It’s not official yet, but the number of reporters saying Kyle Smith is on his way out of the Washington Football Team’s front office continues to grow. Yesterday Chris Russell talked about the team parting ways with Smith, and potential interest from other teams. John Keim recently said it looked like Smith was going to leave so there could be a clean break from the Bruce Allen era. Ben Standig also said he believes Kyle Smith is out.
This morning Jason La Canfora added his voice to the list, but he is hearing that the team has moved on from Kyle Smith, and they are also going to be making significant changes to the college scouting staff. With Smith likely leaving, and a new GM(Martin Mayhew) and new Executive Vice President of Personnel/Football Operations(Marty Hurney) hired, changes were expected. Washington’s college scouting staff has been together for a while, but with Smith out, a huge shakeup is happening.
Tim Gribble replaced Kyle Smith as director of college scouting. Cole Spencer is also a name to monitor.— Chris Russell AKA The Rooster (@Russellmania621) January 23, 2021
As reported yesterday - several teams have been poking around.https://t.co/j7fPnoX3HXhttps://t.co/Qe658cNcln https://t.co/p0rEFZunZW
The changes to the Washington Football Team’s front office started when Bruce Allen was fired, and then Ron Rivera was hired. Coach-centric organization was heavily emphasized from Day 1, and the team began to immediately be molded to Rivera’s vision. Kyle Smith was promoted to Vice President of Player Personnel, but the team didn’t hire a GM. Rivera brought in several executives from his Carolina Panthers, hiring Rob Rogers to be the Senior Vice President of Football Operations(salary cap), Eric Stokes as the Director of Pro Personnel, and Don Warren as a Senior Pro Scout.
The college scouting staff was largely unchanged, and was Kyle Smith’s crew. Eric Stokes was interviewed for the GM position while Smith wasn’t, and he has been seen as the prime candidate to take over the VP of Player Personnel job. Chris Russell mentions Tim Gribble who replaced Smith as Director of College Scouting last year, and scout Cole Spencer in response to La Canfora’s “big changes” tweet.
The decision to move on from Kyle Smith, who has been successfully running the team’s drafts for the last few years, has not been a popular one. Washington has let a lot of young, talented coaches and executives leave over the years that have gone on to have successful careers elsewhere. Smith was seen as a good talent evaluator, who wasn’t ready for the GM role here, and hasn’t had any interviews for that position around the league. If Smith leaves as expected, the pressure will be on Ron Rivera, and the people he puts in place to produce quickly and built a talented team. Good luck!