Assistant General Manager, Atlanta Falcons
Scott Pioli has spent 22 years in the NFL. He has been named NFL Executive of the Year by various national media outlets five times during his career, including honors from Sporting News, Sports Illustrated, CBS Sports, and Pro Football Weekly/PFWA in 2010. In nine-years with the New England Patriots, Pioli and Head Coach Bill Belichick compiled an NFL-best 102-42 (.708) regular season record, won Super Bowls XXXVI, XXXVIII and XXXIX, claimed four AFC championships, and won six AFC East titles.
In addition to his front office experience, Pioli spent the 2013 season as an analyst on NBC’s Football Night in America where he offered fans behind the scenes insight into the NFL. Pioli also serves as a member of the NFL’s Bill Walsh Minority Fellowship Advisory Council, helping to make the NFL a more diverse and inclusive league.
Pioli was the architect of one of the greatest turnarounds in Kansas City Chiefs history as the club won the AFC West with a 10-6 record in his second season at the helm. It was Kansas City’s first division title and home playoff appearance since 2003. In four seasons with the Chiefs, Pioli drafted Pro Bowl players such as Eric Berry (3), Justin Houston (2), Dontari Poe, and Dexter McCluster. In addition to the Pro Bowlers he selected in the NFL Draft, four players Pioli signed to contract extensions went on to earn Pro Bowl honors. Matt Cassel (2010), Jamaal Charles (2010), Tamba Hali (2011), and Derrick Johnson (2011) all earned their first career Pro Bowl selections after Pioli signed them to extensions.
Pioli joined the Chiefs after serving as the Vice President of Player Personnel with the New England Patriots. With New England, the Patriots became widely recognized as one of the NFL’s model franchises. Working in close concert with Head Coach Bill Belichick, the duo rapidly developed the Patriots into a consistent championship contender. Pioli and Belichick’ s collaborative efforts over nine seasons in New England resulted in 14 playoff victories, tying the Pittsburgh and Dallas squads of the 1970s for the most playoff wins by a franchise in a single decade. New England accumulated 11 playoff victories from 2003-07, the highest total by any team over a five-year span in NFL history.
Pioli was named the George Young NFL Executive of the Year by Sporting News following the 2003 and 2004 seasons, an award voted on by other NFL executives. The youngest individual ever to win that accolade, Pioli joined Bobby Beathard (Washington ‘82-83) and Bill Polian (Carolina ‘95-96) as just the third person to ever win that honor in consecutive seasons. During the 2000’s, Sports Illustrated named Pioli the number one GM/Pro Sports Executive, Sporting News named him the NFL Executive of the Decade, and ESPN named him the NFL Personnel Man of the Decade.
Pioli and Belichick became the first personnel director/head coach tandem in league annals to win three Super Bowls during a four-year span (2001-04). They also helped the Patriots register nine or more victories in eight consecutive seasons, including the NFL’s first 16-0 regular season in 2007.
Pioli began his NFL career when he was hired by Belichick as a Scouting Assistant for the Cleveland Browns in 1992. He spent the next three seasons working as the Browns Pro Personnel Assistant. He was promoted to Pro Personnel Coordinator when the team moved to Baltimore In 1996.
In 1997, Pioli was hired as the New York Jets Director of Pro Personnel. In just two seasons working with Head Coach Bill Parcells, the Jets completed a worst-to-first turnaround, rebounding from a 1-15 campaign in 1996 to a 12-4 record in 1998. Those 12 wins in 1998 were the most in franchise history and gave the Jets their first division title since 1968.
Pioli played defensive tackle at Central Connecticut State (1983-87), where he was a three-time All-New England selection and graduated with a degree in Communications. From 1988-89, he served as a Graduate Assistant at Syracuse University, where he also earned a master’s degree from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.
Pioli then took a full-time coaching opportunity at Murray State, where he spent one season as the offensive line coach (1990) and one season as the defensive line coach (1991). He left the coaching ranks to join the Browns personnel department in 1992.
While he has made his living in the arena of professional sports, Pioli is passionate about the importance of education and the arts. He supports a number of non-profit organizations which focus on those two cornerstones. Pioli serves on the Board of Directors for College for Every Student (CFES), a nonprofit organization committed to raising the academic aspirations and performance of underserved youth. CFES works with more than 200 rural and urban schools and districts in 24 states to help kids prepare for, gain access to and succeed in college. Each school works with more than 50 CFES Scholars (low-income youth), most of whom will be first in their family to pursue higher education.
During his time in Kansas City, he sat on the Board of Directors for the Kansas City Repertory Theater and he and his wife, Dallas, were actively involved with The Children’s Place, an organization that nurtures and promotes the healthy development of young children who have survived abuse, neglect and trauma by providing specialized services and family support, within a safe and caring environment. He and his wife were also annual supporters of a number of local non-profits including, The Kansas City Symphony, The Nelson-Atkins Museum, The Charlotte Street Foundation, and many others. In addition to their support of education these local and national groups, the Pioli family created an endowed grant for the arts at the National Italian American Foundation.
As the first member of his family to pursue higher education, Pioli has founded a number of academic scholarships to help students pursue their college goals. He established an endowed scholarship fund, the Scott Pioli Family Scholarship for CFES scholars attending his alma mater, Central Connecticut State University. Founded by Pioli, the WIN for KC Pioli Family Scholarship is awarded annually to two local female students entering their first year of college. While serving as general manager for the Kansas City Chiefs, he worked with the club to create the KC Chiefs/Pioli Family Scholarship which awarded two scholarships for children of employees to pursue further education.
Since arriving in Atlanta, he has continued to support the arts by serving as a member of the board of directors for the Alliance Theatre. The Tony Award winning theatre is one of the leading producing theatres in the Southeast, creating a powerful experience of shared theatre for diverse people.
Pioli was inducted into the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in 2014.
Pioli resides in Atlanta with his wife Dallas and their daughter Mia Costa Pioli.