Broncos hire Kelly Kleine as scouting executive, making her one of football's most powerful women

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The Denver Broncos hired former Minnesota Vikings scout Kelly Kleine as their executive director of football operations/special advisor to the general manager on Monday, a landmark transaction that makes Kleine one of the most powerful women in football.

Kleine will work as a talent evaluator and report directly to general manager George Paton in her new position. Per the team, she'll play a significant role in scouting college and pro players in preparation for the NFL draft and free agency alongside her daily football operations duties. She'll also oversee the team's video and equipment departments.

Paton: Kleine a 'rising star'

"Kelly is a rising star in the NFL, and we're fortunate to add someone of her caliber to the Denver Broncos," Paton said via a team statement. "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."

Kelly Kleine has advanced from a public relations intern to an NFL scouting executive role in 10 seasons. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File)
Kelly Kleine has advanced from a public relations intern to an NFL scouting executive role in 10 seasons. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File)

Intern to executive in 10 seasons

Kleine arrives at her executive role after starting her NFL career as a public relations intern with the Minnesota Vikings in 2012. From there, she worked as a scouting administration intern and scouting assistant before four years as Minnesota's college scouting coordinator from 2015-18. 

She then advanced to the position of Minnesota's manager of player personnel/college scout for the last two seasons before being hired by the Broncos on Monday. In that role, she scouted the midwest and managed the Vikings' scouting interns.

Kleine and Paton worked together in Minnesota where Paton was the assistant general manager and vice president of player personnel before joining the Broncos as general manager in January.

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