Longtime NFL executive A.J. Smith dies at 75

Longtime NFL executive A.J. Smith passed away Sunday at the age of 75. Smith spent over 30 years in the NFL, beginning his career in 1977 as a scout with the New York Giants.

Smith was with the Buffalo Bills from 1986 until 2000, beginning as a scout before moving up to the director of pro personnel. Smith played a role in building the roster of those Buffalo teams that went to four consecutive Super Bowls.

His best work came as general manager of the San Diego Chargers from 2003-12. While with the Chargers, Smith drafted Eli Manning No. 1 overall in 2004 before trading him to the New York Giants for No. 4 pick Philip Rivers and more draft choices.

Smith finished his NFL career as a senior executive/consultant with Washington from 2013-15. Smith was friends with former Washington president Bruce Allen, but the biggest benefit of taking the job was working with his son Kyle.

Kyle Smith spent 2010-20 with Washington, with many believing he’d become the franchise’s next general manager. However, he parted ways after the 2020 season and took a position with the Atlanta Falcons, where he has been ever since.

Feb 25, 2020; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Washington Redskins general manager Kyle Smith. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports


Story originally appeared on Commanders Wire