The NFL is considering moves aimed at increasing minority hires among the coaching and senior executive ranks, NFL.com and other US media reported Friday.
The NFL was one of the first professional leagues to require teams to interview at least one minority candidate for coaching and senior management positions, establishing its “Rooney Rule” in 2003.
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But commissioner Roger Goodell acknowledged at the Super Bowl in January that in a league where 70% of players are African-American minorities remained under represented among coaches and front office executives.
“Clearly we are not where we want to be,” Goodell said. “We’ve put a lot of work into not only our people but our policies overall. But it’s clear we need to change and do something different.
“There’s no reason to expect a different outcome next year without this kind of change.”
According to Friday’s report, the change under discussion would offer teams that hire a minority candidate for a senior executive position such as general manager or as a head coach an improved selection spot in latter stages of the draft
Teams that retain minority coaches and general managers for more than two years would also be rewarded.
NFL.com and ESPN reported that the proposal would be discussed at a virtual meeting of owners.
Related proposals that could be discussed including requiring interviews of multiple minority candidates for head-coaching positions and the removal of a rule that allows teams to bar assistant coaches from interviewing for other team’s offensive and defensive coordinator positions.
Only two of the NFL’s 32 general managers and four head coaches belong to minorities.