John Dorsey (American football)

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John Dorsey
refer to caption
John Dorsey in 2019
Detroit Lions
Position:Senior personnel executive
Personal information
Born: (1960-08-30) August 30, 1960 (age 60)
Leonardtown, Maryland, U.S.
Height:6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight:240 lb (109 kg)
Career information
NFL Draft:1984 / Round: 4 / Pick: 99
Career history
As a player:
As an executive:
Career highlights and awards
Career NFL statistics
Player stats at

John Michael Dorsey (born August 30, 1960) is an American football executive and former player who is a senior personnel executive for the Detroit Lions of the National Football League (NFL). He previously served as general manager of the Cleveland Browns and Kansas City Chiefs. [1][2] He is a former National Football League player for the Green Bay Packers, and later served in the Packers' scouting department for more than two decades, including director of college scouting from 2000 to 2011.[3] He served as the Seattle Seahawks' director of player personnel in 1999, between two stints in Green Bay's front office.

College career[edit]

Dorsey was a four-year starter at linebacker for the University of Connecticut Huskies, being twice named Yankee Conference Defensive Player of the Year as well as an NCAA Division I-AA All-American honors.[4]

Professional career[edit]

Dorsey was a fourth-round pick by the Green Bay Packers in the 1984 NFL Draft. He was also seventh-round draft pick by the USFL's Philadelphia Stars in the 1984 USFL Draft. He played five seasons for Green Bay at linebacker and on special teams.[4] His thirty-five special teams tackles for the Packers in 1984 is still a team record.[5]

Dorsey spent the 1989 season on the injured reserve list after suffering a knee injury during pre-game warmups of the Packers regular season opener, effectively ending his playing days.[5] He totaled 130 tackles and two fumble recoveries during his five-year career.[4]

Administrative career[edit]

Green Bay Packers[edit]

After his playing career ended, Dorsey chose to remain in football, taking a job as a college scout for the Packers in May 1991. He was later promoted to director of college scouting for the team in February 1997.[4]

Seattle Seahawks[edit]

In January 1999, Dorsey followed former Packers coach Mike Holmgren to the Seattle Seahawks, assuming the role of the team's director of player personnel.[4] He resigned in 2000.

Second stint with the Packers[edit]

In 2000, Dorsey returned to the Packers, taking over again as director of college scouting. He remained in that position through 2011, and winning a Super Bowl ring. In 2012, he was named Director of Football Operations.[4] He is credited with making the Packers one of the best drafting teams in the NFL, helping choose star players like Aaron Rodgers, Clay Matthews and Greg Jennings.[5]

Kansas City Chiefs[edit]

On January 13, 2013, Dorsey became the general manager of the Kansas City Chiefs.[6] The move reunited Dorsey with new Chiefs head coach Andy Reid. The pair served on the Green Bay Packers coaching staff together from 1992 to 1997.[2] It had previously been announced that Reid would have the final say in football matters when he came over from Philadelphia, but the Chiefs then announced that Dorsey would have the same authority over personnel as other NFL general managers. However, Dorsey and Reid reported on an equal basis to chairman and CEO Clark Hunt, unlike past years in which the coach reported to the general manager.[6] On June 22, 2017, the Chiefs organization and Dorsey agreed to part ways,[7] after posting a 43–21 record and three trips to the postseason in his four seasons as GM for the Chiefs.[8] Shortly before leaving the Chiefs, former Chiefs wide receiver Jeremy Maclin said that Dorsey informed him of his release on a voicemail, which drew criticism from Maclin himself and the media.[9] After he was fired, it was reported he was fired due to his management style, communication, as well as the Chiefs salary cap issues. His management of the salary cap led to several long term and fan favorite Chiefs players being released or traded, including Jamaal Charles and Derrick Johnson.[10] However, Dorsey also drafted many key contributors to the Chiefs' Super Bowl LIV winning team, including speedy star receiver Tyreek Hill and star tight end Travis Kelce, two of Kansas City's best players.

Cleveland Browns[edit]

On December 7, 2017, Dorsey became the general manager of the Cleveland Browns, hours after Sashi Brown was relieved of his duties; a press conference announcing Dorsey's hiring was held the following day with team owner Jimmy Haslam.[8] Dorsey went on to draft quarterback Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma) 1st overall in the 2018 NFL Draft, pairing him with #4 overall pick cornerback Denzel Ward (Ohio State), running back Nick Chubb (Georgia) in the Second Round, wide receiver Antonio Callaway (Florida), among others.[11] Dorsey also traded for star wide receiver Jarvis Landry, previously a member of the Miami Dolphins.[12] After finishing 7-8-1 in the 2018 season and missing the playoffs, Dorsey went on to trade for star wide receiver Odell Beckham, Jr. (previously a teammate of Landry's at LSU), as well as acquiring other assets via trade and the draft (cornerback Greedy Williams, running back Kareem Hunt, defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson, and defensive end Olivier Vernon).[13]

On December 31, 2019, the Browns announced the firing of Dorsey.[14]

Detroit Lions[edit]

After consulting for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2020, Dorsey was hired by the Detroit Lions as a senior personnel executive on January 27, 2021.[15]

Personal life[edit]

Dorsey is a son of former Maryland state senator Walter B. Dorsey and Jeanne Dorsey Mandel, who remarried in 1974 to Maryland Governor Marvin Mandel.[16]

Dorsey attended and graduated from St. Mary's High School in Annapolis. He earned bachelor's degrees in Political Science and Economics from the University of Connecticut.

Dorsey has two adult sons from his first marriage and has a son and daughter with his current wife, Patricia.[16] The couple first met in Kansas City while Dorsey was on a scouting trip for the Packers. After several years of dating, they were married in 2005.[17]

Dorsey has competed in multiple marathon races and is an avid water skier.[18]



  1. ^ "Browns name John Dorsey General Manager". Archived from the original on December 8, 2017. Retrieved December 8, 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Chiefs name John Dorsey new General Manager". KSHB-TV website. January 12, 2013. Archived from the original on June 6, 2013. Retrieved January 12, 2013.
  3. ^ "John Dorsey Director of College Scouting". Archived from the original on April 1, 2009. Retrieved April 16, 2009.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "Husky Great John Dorsey Named Kansas City Chiefs G.M." University of Connecticut Sports Information Office. January 15, 2013. Retrieved January 17, 2013.
  5. ^ a b c Teicher, Adam (January 12, 2013). "Chiefs to introduce John Dorsey as new GM today". The Kansas City Star website. Retrieved January 17, 2013.
  6. ^ a b "Chiefs hire John Dorsey as GM". ESPN. Retrieved January 13, 2013.
  7. ^ "Chiefs, Dorsey Agree to Part Ways". Archived from the original on July 10, 2017. Retrieved June 22, 2017.
  8. ^ a b Cabot, Mary Kay (December 8, 2017). "Browns' John Dorsey: "Let's reawaken this sleeping giant"". Retrieved December 8, 2017.
  9. ^ "Jeremy Maclin was upset, shocked that he learned of his Chiefs release by voicemail".
  10. ^ "Sources: Communication, management style were factors in Chiefs' firing of Dorsey".
  11. ^ Rollins, Khadrice. "leveland Browns NFL Draft Picks: 2018 Round-by-Round Results, Grades". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved June 18, 2019.
  12. ^ Labbe, Dan. "Grading the Browns 2018 Offseason".
  13. ^ Shaw, Courtney. "Here are all of the moves the Browns have made so far this offseason". Cleveland News 5. Retrieved June 18, 2019.
  14. ^ Shook, Nick (December 31, 2019). "Browns part ways with general manager John Dorsey". Retrieved January 2, 2020.
  15. ^ "Lions add Ray Agnew and John Dorsey to front office". January 27, 2021. Retrieved March 4, 2021.
  16. ^ a b Cabot, Mary Kay (September 10, 2018). "John Dorsey: How getting blindsided by the Chiefs prepared him to remake the Browns". Retrieved December 25, 2018.
  17. ^ Mellinger, Sam (January 14, 2013). "New Chiefs GM John Dorsey has a real KC love story". The Kansas City Star website. Retrieved January 17, 2013.
  18. ^ a b c d "John Dorsey bio". Green Bay Packers team website. 2010. Retrieved January 17, 2013.