Dennis Hickey began his NFL career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1996, one year after current General Manager Mark Dominik joined the Bucs' staff.
Both began with the team as pro personnel assistants, Dominik rising through the pro scouting ranks to his current post, which he assumed in 2009. Hickey paralleled Dominik's course in the college scouting domain, taking over his current role as director of college scouting in 2005. Together, they have helped reshape the Buccaneers roster in the last two-and-a-half years, building a lasting contender primarily through the draft, trades and astute waiver-wire maneuvers. Hickey's 16-year tenure with the Buccaneers includes nine winning seasons, four division titles and one Super Bowl championship.
And Hickey will remain an integral part of that process going forward. On Wednesday, the Buccaneers announced a series of changes and additions to the team's player personnel staff, including the promotion of Hickey to Director of Player Personnel.
As he has done since 2005, Hickey will continue to coordinate a staff of area scouts and manage the compilation of information on college players. Over the past three years, he has worked side-by-side with General Manager Mark Dominik in constructing three highly-regarded draft classes. Hickey's new position will allow him to continue to work with Dominik on all matters of the Buccaneers' roster construction as he now oversees the Pro Personnel Department as well.
"Dennis' organizational ability and talent as a player evaluator have been vital to the Buccaneers for the past 15 seasons," said Dominik. "We are excited that he will continue to be an integral part of our plan in his expanded role, as he exemplifies this organization's focus and commitment to bringing championships to Tampa Bay."
The Buccaneers have also promoted several other members of their player personnel staff. Mike Greenberg, previously a pro personnel assistant, will now serve as coordinator of football administration. Former Combine Scout Tony Kinkela will now serve as one of the team's college scouts.
There are three new additions to Dominik's staff, as well. Bill Rees, who has worked with the Buccaneers as an outside consultant on the draft the last two years, has been hired as a college scout. Tony Hardie, who formerly worked with Rees at Northwestern University, takes over as the team's new combine scout. And Rob McCartney, who most recently served in the Pittsburgh Steelers' player personnel department, has come aboard as a pro personnel assistant.
As the director of college scouting, Hickey headed up a crew that has produced outstanding results in recent years, both in the draft and in the critical follow-up stages when convincing scouting reports are critical to quick decision-making. Key players the Buccaneers have pounced in over the last two years after they were let go by other teams or placed on practice squads include LeGarrette Blount, Ted Larsen, Al Woods, Frank Okam and Corey Lynch.
Of course, those scouting reports are instrumental during the actual draft proceedings, as well, and the Bucs have received significant praise for their efforts in that regard in recent years. Core contributors drafted by the Buccaneers since Hickey became the director of college scouting in 2005 include Cadillac Williams, Barrett Ruud, Davin Joseph, Quincy Black, Aqib Talib, Josh Freeman, Roy Miller, Gerald McCoy, Mike Williams and Arrelious Benn. Hickey has also helped Dominik place a new emphasis in succeeding with later-round draft picks, using the sixth and seventh rounds to find Geno Hayes, E.J. Biggers, Sammie Stroughter, Cody Grimm, Dekoda Watson and Erik Lorig.
In his new role, Greenberg will work directly with Dominik on all aspects of the salary cap, contract negotiations and strategic planning. He will also oversee budgeting for all football operations, including coaching video, athletic training, equipment, strength and conditioning and player development departments. Kinkela will now be responsible for scouting the Northwest region of the United States, while Rees will join Tampa Bay's college scouting department full-time after his two years of consultancy.
During the 2010 season, Rees worked at Northwestern University as their coordinator of player personnel/assistant director of football operations. Hardie served a dual role under Rees at NU, working as both a player personnel assistant and a defensive quality control assistant.
McCartney comes to Tampa Bay after working as a player personnel intern for the Steelers organization. He will assist Coordinator of Pro Scouting Shelton Quarles with advance scouting of Buccaneer opponents, as well as organizing player workouts and evaluation of all pro leagues.