Lions, Titans Should Consider Alonzo Highsmith for GM
Updated Jan. 7, 2016
By Charlie Campbell. Follow Charlie on Twitter @draftcampbell.
There have been a lot of names discussed for the general manager openings in Detroit and Tennessee, but one that league sources say should be new general manager for the Lions or Titans is Green Bay Packers senior personnel executive Alonzo Highsmith. The Packers have maintained a talented roster that has made Green Bay a perennial playoff team. Highsmith has been a critical member in the Packers' front office leading Green Bay to seven straight playoff appearances and a Super Bowl Championship in 2010.
Highsmith has been a part of football greatness since he was a youngster in South Florida. Highsmith, a water boy for the Dolphins during the early 1980s, was close with Don Shula's family and went to high school with Mike Shula. Highsmith was a high school All-American in Miami and starred at the University of Miami before playing for the Oilers, Cowboys and Buccaneers. After his NFL playing days ended, Highsmith was a professional boxer and compiled a 27-1-1 record in his pugilist career.
Executives from around the league say that Highsmith has one of the best eyes for talent in the NFL and has played a massive role in assembling Green Bay's roster. Not only do they say that he has a great gift for discovering talent, but he works tirelessly, and is especially good at scouting quarterbacks. Highsmith has played with and has been a part of teams with great quarterbacks going back to playing with Shula in high school. He was a teammate of Bernie Kosar and Vinny Testaverde in college at the University of Miami. Highsmith played with Warren Moon and Troy Aikman in the NFL, while being part of Brett Favre's tenure in Green Bay and was part of the Green Bay drafting and developing Aaron Rodgers into the best quarterback in the league.
Highsmith has learned under some of the best general managers in the NFL over the past 15 years in Ron Wolf and Ted Thompson, so he's ready to lead a franchise in the general manager position. He also learned from coaching greats in Howard Schnellenberger, Jimmy Johnson, Don Shula, and his father, Walter Highsmith.
Highsmith was hired by then Packers Executive Vice President/General Manager Ron Wolf in 1999 to be a college scout for Green Bay. After serving as an area scout for many years, Highsmith was promoted to his current spot in 2012. Working closely with Thompson has given Highsmith a perfect position to prepare for running a franchise.
Sources say that Highsmith has a tremendous work ethic from his time as a player, professional boxer, and area scout. Given his background he works very well with NFL players and is able to identify with them. With his personal and organizational leadership skills, he can get a franchise working in one direction from the front office into the locker room. Everything he does at Green Bay is about winning as an organization, and sources believe he will build that kind of atmosphere in any team that hires him as their general manager.
Last offseason, the Redskins tried to hire Highsmith away, but they were blocked from doing so by Thompson. League sources from multiple teams feel that Highsmith would be a the perfect higher by either the Lions or Titans.