The Detroit Lions continue to cast a wide net in search of the team’s next general manager, and are set to get a look at another name with major experience in the coming days.
According to Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network, the Lions will interview former Atlanta Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff for their GM job next week. Dimitroff is coming off being fired during the 2020 season with the Falcons.
Dimitroff is an interesting candidate given he has not been out of football long at all and could simply jump from one job to the other without much transition period. Dimitroff also has the advantage of having worked in Detroit before early in his career, so he would certainly know what to expect from the team and the franchise, perhaps giving him a bit of a leg up over other candidates in the process.
Thomas Dimitroff Worked With Lions Before
Dimitroff, 54, has been working in football nearly his whole life. After starting as a CFL scout following college, Dimitroff worked with the Cleveland Browns as a grounds crew member, then joining forces with Bill Belichick. He worked with the Kansas City Chiefs as a part time scout in 1993, before getting his big break with the Lions in 1994 where he became an area scout until 1997. He was a college scout for the Browns from 1998 until 2001, then joining the Patriots to become their director of college scouting from 2003-2007. During that time, Dimitroff captured two Super Bowl titles in New England.
From there, Atlanta tapped Dimitroff to become their general manager, and he presided over a successful run with the Falcons which led to a near victory in Super Bowl LI. The team struggled and Dimitroff along with head coach Dan Quinn was let go this season. That doesn’t diminish his overall success in drafting and developing a successful team for over a decade in Atlanta.
Lions General Manager Rumors
Detroit has begun the process of picking out who they wish to interview now, and those interviews will not be able to begin for a few more weeks in the case of successful executives from playoff franchises. Detroit has committed to change on a deep level for the future since the firing of Bob Quinn and Matt Patricia a few weeks ago, and are looking for a new voice in the front office to help set the tone from the top down.
An experienced name could be what the Lions need the most considering the problems they have had on the field and with regard to roster construction the last handful of seasons. Thus it’s no surprise that early on, John Dorsey, Jerry Reese and Rick Smith have been the three experienced candidates with the most traction in terms of the general manager position, and it’s no surprise that both of them are veterans of the league. Dimitroff fits this profile as well. Other names have surfaced too, such as ESPN’s Louis Riddick. Look for these interviews to happen in the next few days weeks before anyone else gets contacted from the outside. Detroit has completed interviews with three in-house candidates already.