FLOWERY BRANCH — Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff was named the NFL’s executive of the year by the Sporting News on Wednesday.
The magazine surveyed 47 general managers, assistant general managers, owners, personnel men and head coaches for the executive of the year award. In voting done before the playoffs, Dimitroff received 13 votes, Kansas City general manager Scott Pioli came in second with eight, and Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik was third with seven.
The Falcons finished 13-3 and won the NFC South last season. Of the Falcons 22 starters, 10 were acquired by Dimitroff via draft, trade or free agency.
Dimitroff’s has attempted to make system-specific drafts that have been augmented by timely trades and free agent signings.
Offensive starters acquired by Dimitroff include quarterback Matt Ryan (draft), left tackle Sam Baker (draft), tight end Tony Gonzalez (trade) and running back Michael Turner (free agency).
Defensive starters by Dimitroff include defensive end Kroy Biermann (draft), defensive tackle Corey Peters (draft), middle linebacker Curtis Lofton (draft), weakside linebacker Mike Peterson (free agent), strong safety William Moore (draft), free safety Thomas DeCoud (draft) and cornerback Dunta Robinson (free agency).
Dimitroff was also named executive of the year by the magazine in 2008.
“I am thrilled for and proud of Thomas and his staff,” Falcons owner Arthur Blank said “Winning this award twice in three years is validation and recognition of Thomas’ many contributions not only to building a winning team over his first three seasons, but his unwavering focus and vision for this team’s future. He is truly deserving of this award.”
Under his leadership, the Falcons have posted three consecutive winning seasons for the first time in team history.
Since 2008, Atlanta has posted a 33-15 (.688) record, which is tied for the third best in the NFL over the last three seasons. Additionally, the Falcons have earned playoff berths in two of Dimitroff’s three seasons.
–D. Orlando Ledbetter