ENGLEWOOD, Colo. — General Manager George Paton has made a key addition to the Broncos' front office.
The Broncos have hired Kelly Kleine as their Executive Director of Football Operations/Special Advisor to the General Manager, Paton announced Monday.
"Kelly is a rising star in the NFL, and we're fortunate to add someone of her caliber to the Denver Broncos," Paton said. "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."
In Denver, Kleine will be the primary liason for the team's football operations while also holding significant responsibilities in both pro and college scouting. Kleine should be a key piece of the team's front office, as she will be involved with player evaluation, day-to-day football administration and preparation for the NFL Draft and free agency.
Kleine will report directly to Paton and will oversee the Broncos' video and equipment departments.
Kleine is believed to be the highest ranking female in scouting in the history of the league.
She arrives in Denver after spending the previous 10 seasons with the Minnesota Vikings, including the last nine seasons with the team's scouting department.
As the Manager of Player Personnel/College Scout for the last two years, Kleine has been integral in the Vikings' front office. Kleine scouted the Midwest region, which included Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota, and she served as the point person for all off-site scouts while also scheduling and facilitating pre-draft visits. Kleine also coordinated the Vikings' efforts at all-star games and the Combine, and she managed and trained the team's scouting interns.
Kleine also helped the team on the pro scouting side, as she assisted with weekly scouting advances, including special teams advances. She also evaluated pro teams during the preseason in preparation for final cuts while also helping to evaluate tryout players.
While in Minnesota, Kleine also helped managed the team's draft operations and ran the team's draft board during meetings, while also helping to negotiate during college free agency. Kleine also helped compile special projects for Vikings GM Rick Spielman.
Before being promoted to her latest role with the Vikings, Kleine spent four seasons as the team's college scouting coordinator (2015-18). She was previously a scouting administration intern (2013) and scouting assistant (2014).
Kleine began her career in Minnesota as a Public Relations Intern in 2012, and she has previous experience with the University of Minnesota and the PGA Championship.
In Minnesota, Kleine was a member of the team's Diversity and Inclusion Council and WISE (Women in Sports and Events) Twin Cities. She has also served as an annual speaker at the Women's Careers in Football Forum.