Lack Of Minority Hires In NFL May Lead To Rooney Rule Being Changed


Since the NFL regular season ended, there were 8 head coaches fired and 7 general manager or front office personnel fired. That’s 15 jobs openings that became available and none were filled by a minority.

It is a sad state, but the usual norm so no one should be surprised.  USA Today is reporting via a high-ranking NFL official, that a major overhaul of the Rooney Rule or the process that was put in place to prevent such discriminatory practices, could be in the works.

“While there has been full compliance with the interview requirements of the Rooney Rule and we wish the new head coaches and general managers much success, the hiring results this year have been unexpected and reflect a disappointing lack of diversity,” said NFL executive vice president of human resources Roibert Gulliver in a statement.

“The Rooney Rule has been a valuable tool in expanding diversity and inclusion in hiring practices, but there is more work to do, especially around increasing and strengthening the pipeline of diverse candidates for head coach and senior football executive positions.

“We have already started the process of developing a plan for additional steps that will better ensure more diversity and inclusion on a regular basis in our hiring results. We look forward to discussing these steps with our advisers to ensure that our employment, development and equal opportunity programs are both robust and successful,” Gulliver added.

Several organizations have stated that they will press the NFL to overhaul and make sufficient changes to the “Rooney Rule.”

Each of the teams that had vacancies did comply with the rule, but it impossible to determine to what extent that compliance was followed.

Many are questioning if the NFL amid all it’s popularity is moving backwards when it comes to hiring head coaches and front office personnel.

Has the myth that minorities lack  intelligence and leadership qualities now jumped to head coaches and front office personnel, since it can no longer be used on the quarterback position?

Giants GM Jerry Reese seems to think that sometimes it’s just the luck of the draw.

“It seems a little bit unusual with so many openings (front office, HC, OC, DC) this cycle, but qualified minority candidates were interviewed and it didn’t happen this time,” Reese said in an email to USA TODAY Sports. “I think the Rooney Rule definitely helps and brings awareness in the hiring process, but the rule is not meant to make clubs hire anyone. I’m hopeful that more minority candidates will be seriously interviewed and considered as we move forward in the years to come.

“Sometimes it’s just the luck of the draw, coincidence, or however you want to frame it … look at (former Giants executive) Dave Gettleman, who worked in the league for 25 years before he got his opportunity at a top position.”

I’m extremely interested in knowing what my readers think?

4 thoughts on “Lack Of Minority Hires In NFL May Lead To Rooney Rule Being Changed

  • The Steelers hired Tomlin from complying with the Rooney rule and you see how well that has turned out. They won’t admit that this happened, but I know otherwise.

  • Let me play devil’l advocate for a sec: besides Lovie, Horton, Crennel and Singletary (maybe for the last 2?) is there any other african american coach/staff within the NFL (and outside) that should’ve been highly considered for a head coaching position?

  • As an HR executive and a huge football fan, I have to say I am fursturated with all of this. I believe that NAACP is always looking for a fight of some sort. The Rooney Rule is in place and over time you will see more and more quailified african american coachs. Also, I am tired of the argument for balanace in coaching. If you look on the field of play there are more talented african american gentleman playing then white. Balance is off no matter what and making this racial is only going to hurt the NFL.

    • That’s exactly the reason there is a coaching outrage. How do you represent 70% of the talent, yet, those who have played and excelled at the highest level of the sport are continuously told that you’re not smart, influential, or persuasive enough to be a coach? I won’t say anyone who was good at a sport is automatically coaching material, but the void in that position and, to a higher extent, the pipeline, is embarrassing.

      Anyway, the other big issue that needs to be addressed is the lack of Black QB coaches and OC’s. I won’t pretend to know the qualifications or qualities that are looked for in a QB coach, and with the dearth of black QB’s from the past, I can see why there are no current black QB coaches. But these two positions, OC and QB coach, QB coaches being one of the two major roads to an NFL OC position (the other being college OC which then of course causes the same problem) are currently the way to build the pipeline for HC jobs and blacks are being shut out of those. Let’s first address correcting the lack of opportunities in the pipeline, then we can focus on the way organizations skirt around not having black HC’s.

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