Fritz Pollard Alliance wants NFL to investigate Raiders

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The Fritz Pollard Alliance has changed its tune regarding the compliance of the Raiders with the Rooney Rule.

“We are deeply concerned by reports that the Oakland Raiders’ owner, Mark Davis, came to an agreement with Jon Gruden about him becoming the Raiders’ next head coach before interviewing any candidates of color,” the group said in a statement issued on Wednesday night. “If so, the Club violated the Rooney Rule, which was instituted by the NFL in 2003 and requires teams to interview at least one candidate of color for open head coaching and general manager positions.

“As soon as we learned of the reports, we formally requested that the NFL thoroughly investigate the matter to conclusively determine whether the Rooney Rule was violated — and if it was violated, to impose an appropriate punishment.”

The news of a potential violation didn’t come from “reports,” however. The news came from an admission by Raiders owner Mark Davis that, as many suspected, the Raiders reached an agreement in principle with Gruden before firing Jack Del Rio. Which, as PFT explained when it was merely suspected that the Raiders struck a deal with Gruden before firing Del Rio, means that the job was never vacant. Which means that there was no way of complying with the Rooney Rule, no matter how many minority candidates were interviewed after Del Rio was fired.

As noted earlier today, PFT asked the league during a recent media briefing whether it’s permissible to reach an agreement in principle with a new coach before firing the current coach. The league still hasn’t provided an answer, quite possibly because there is no good answer.

130 responses to “Fritz Pollard Alliance wants NFL to investigate Raiders

  1. Raiders have a history of diversity in both front office and head coach. Their GM is an African American for Pete’s sake, Amy Trask held a front office position at one point. This is the team you want to pick to investigate as a violator of a rule that promotes diversity and equal opportunities?

  2. The rule ought to be changed so that if either the CURRENT coach or GM would satisfy the Rooney Rule, then the team gets a pass on hiring the opposite position. So in this case, because the GM Reggie satisfies the rule, the Raiders get a PASS on their hiring a coach. And vice versa.

  3. This is a blatant violation of the Rooney Rule. The only solution is for the Raiders to fire Reggie McKenzie to set an example for anyone else considering conducting sham interviews in the incorrect order.

  4. I am deeply concerned that the laughable Fritz Pollard Alliance chooses to voice it’s pathetic drivel regarding the hiring practices of ANY organization. Take that feeble and archaic Looney rule and shove it.

  5. until contract was signed there was nothing enforceable if Davis or Gruden changed their mind or if something happened to Davis, his heir would not be bound to pay Gruden

  6. So they interview someone of color. No way in hell he gets the job. The owner picks who he wants to pick. Maybe they could bring Lovie Smith in. The Rooney rule just creates a pay check for Fritz Pollard Alliance created positions. A watchdog group of no real consequence.

  7. tylawspick6 says:
    January 10, 2018 at 8:59 pm
    nothing will happen

    raiders just got caught warming balls
    and nothing happened
    ******************************************
    Yeah, because the league just loves the Raiders right?

  8. the rooney rule does nothing but humiliate, demean and waste the time of a person of color candidate who knows they are just there to satisfy the rule and have no legitimate shot of actually getting the job

  9. Sounds like a shake-down.

    The Rooney Rule is inherently racist because it judges people solely on race. It should be abolished and that type of identity politics thinking has no place in a sane, modern society.

  10. A) Fine the hell outta them ($10, 20 million or more), plus 2 or 3 No. 1 picks, or no picks in the next draft or two — something that’s really gonna sting.
    B) Drop the Rooney Rule.

  11. Def violates the spirit of the rule. If not then what keeps every team from doing the same thing?

    Question is what penalty is steep enough to keep another team from doing it ?

    Should cost the Raiders or amyone else a 1st round pick.

  12. The Raiders thought they could tuck this rule aside like they tried to in the snowy Divisional game against the Patriots in January 2002. They didn’t get away with it then and they will not get away with this obvious violation of the Rooney rule now.

  13. So let get this straight, and I was all for the Rooney rule at the start, but let this sink in; If Mark Davis would have called in and had a pointless, worthless, meaningless (outside of fulfilling the Rooney rule requirement) and irrelevant interview with a person of color, then called in Gruden and gave him the job everything would have been copesthetic??

    How is that not MORE insulting to persons of color???

  14. I am 100% in support of the Rooney Rule or any other rule that helps to insist that the best person gets hired for the job, regardless of race. I could go on for hours about how Jon Gruden is the most qualified person for this job, but most intelligent people already know that. What’s going to happen now, is this Fritz Pollard alliance is going to cause a huge backlash, and they’re actually going to hurt minorities who are well qualified for coaching jobs. They mean well, but they’re dumb. Just plain dumb. I think whoever is in a leadership position in this Fritz Pollard alliance should resign immediately for the good of minority coaches. Bozo the Clown could do a better job. Seriously.

  15. And the Browns get a pass for interviewing John Dorsey and a minority for the GM job when it wasn’t open.

    And the Jaguars who interviewed Tom Coughlin for EVP of Football Operations, a position that was not only open, it didn’t exist.

  16. r502 says:
    January 10, 2018 at 8:55 pm
    Raiders have a history of diversity in both front office and head coach. Their GM is an African American for Pete’s sake, Amy Trask held a front office position at one point. This is the team you want to pick to investigate as a violator of a rule that promotes diversity and equal opportunities?

    The Detroit Lions had a history of hiring minorities as well, didn’t stop NFL from nailing them when they hired Mooch.

  17. Teams are simply going through the motions on that rule anyway. It had a purpose on paper, but just like taxes, devious minds find a way around most rules.

  18. The rooney rule is stupid. I mean if the Bengals had rightly fired Marvin Lewis, it is absurd to think they would need to comply with the rule to prove they arent racist. That era is over, and even if an owner or GM IS racist, this rule does nothing to stop that. We need to focus on more concerning things – like the rating free fall, and football icons like Brett Favre saying his grandkids should play safer sports.

  19. The bottom line is as part of the NFL the Raiders and every other member of the league AGREED to the Rooney Rule. They have to comply or pay the consequences. Before the Rooney Rule you could count the number of people of color as head coaches and GMs on one finger of that. The fact that the picture is different now is a result of the rule and people being put into the pipeline.

  20. Nothing should happen.

    The job was never vacant and Davis has been transparent about the glaring loophole he stepped through.

    Let patsy fans whine about warming balls or rooney rules or any of the various “gates” that their beloved franchise has been associated.

    Well done Mark Davis.

  21. The Raiders hired the guy they wanted. He had previously won a Super Bowl and had a pretty good record previously in Oakland. It’s not like they held an open audition for this job.

  22. Rooney Rule is in fact, unconstitutional.
    How would society react to a rule that demanded a white coach or gm be interviewed?
    Is this not the very definition of reverse racism??
    As a minority, or person of color, I am completely and totally offended and insulted by this phony “rule”.
    I would want a legitimate opportunity based on my qualifications and accomplishments, not my race, or skin color.

  23. Affirmative action in a multi billion dollar business is a joke. Trust me, the person could be highlighter green and they would be hired if they can coach/evaluate talent.

  24. Typical modern media and world we live in. This has happened numerous times over the last few years. Raiders are not the first. Anyone paying attention knows this.

  25. They’ll pay off an in house guy that will say he interviewed earlier in the week. This rule is a sham anyway.

  26. The answer is they can hire who they want. They are free to agree with someone “In Principle” without actually hiring someone. The conversation goes like this.
    Mark: “Hey Jon, whould you take the job if it was available”?

    Grudawg: “H*ll Yeah, Call me after the last game”.

    After that, all we have to do is make a sham interview of somebody of color……..cause we need to abide by the rules………….and then actually hire Jon after the last game.

    Did they not interview people before signing a contract?
    No case end of story. There was no hire until contract signed.
    Can’t see that people think otherwise. Makes no sense.

  27. The Raiders clearly violated the rule — but so what!? This is the team that broke ground by hiring Art Shell. And it’s the same team that currently has a Black man in a front office leadership role. There are plenty of teams that comply with the Rooney Rule, and yet still fall way short of the Raiders in terms of fostering minority leadership.

    I’m a Niners fan, and I hate the Raiders, but this is complete B.S.

  28. Looking beyond the fact that the rule is dated, the NFL isn’t going to impose any serious punishment on the Raiders for the simple fact they are moving to Vegas sooner than later, and the league wants it to go a whole lot more smooth than their ill-advised moves to L.A.

    The league is well known to pick and choose who it punishes and to what extent, despite facts, and in this case, they will choose not to punish the Raiders, at least not majorly.

  29. I dont think that teams should have to go through the Rooney rule, if they have one coach in mind. Why waste everyones time?

    So my suggestion would be to only apply the Rooney rule for teams interviewing more than 1 person for head coach.

  30. The Rooney Rule uses preferential treatment to combat preferential treatment. Can a team hire a minority HC without interviewing a white candidate? Any team that hired Tom Flores, Art Shell, and Hue Jackson complied with the rule for life.

  31. Gruden is a greedy ,egotistical back-stabber,and a liar as well. Just ask Jack Del Rio. his “good friend”. He knew he had the job and lied about it for weeks.

  32. Remember Tom Flores, Amy Trask, Art Shell,Hue Jackson Reggie McKenzie? Owners should have the right to hire whom they choose! GO RAIDERS!

  33. the Raiders struck a deal with Gruden before firing Del Rio, means that the job was never vacant. Which means that there was no way of complying with the Rooney Rule
    ~~~~~
    If there was never a vacancy the rule was never applicable. IF it is a violation, cite the specific verbiage that was violated. Good luck with that since it only exists in a press release and not a valid written requirement.

  34. The Rooney Rule has been violated and is a joke so if Roger is serious about the rule the NFL should shut down for one year.

  35. Can someone please explain what the rational argument is AGAINST the Rooney rule? The comments on this site are always overwhelmingly against it, for reasons that seem to misunderstand its context and intention.

    The rule does NOT give preferential treatment to minority candidates, it merely gives them an opportunity to sit at the table for an interview. All open coaching positions involve interviews with multiple candidates — in what way does ensuring that at least one of these prospective candidates is a minority negatively affect a) the other candidates; or b) you as a football fan?

    Some commenters then seem to feel that minority candidates are being interviewed merely as tokens just to satisfy the rule (which somehow offends them… since they are the ones who really know what’s best for these minorities…(?). Even if the interviews are just shams — minority candidates continue to willingly choose to accept the interviews, most likely because they feel they have a legitimate chance for the job. And even if these interviews are only set up to satisfy the rule, I would ask again — how does this negatively affect the any of the other candidates or you as a football fan?

  36. So, black dude here. Not sure why I feel the need to say that with race related issues, but I do. Context, perhaps.

    I’m not sure what the Rooney Rule does. I mean, how many teams have said, “We’re gonna hire Bill Parcels…oh, wait, never mind. We’re gonna hire that black dude instead”? If teams know who they want, why make a minority, whom you know has no chance, prep for an interview and hop on a plane to show compliance? Teams want to hire the best coach for their team, so let them without all the fakeness. If they want a coach who happens to be a minority, they’ll hire him/her without the league telling them to do so or consider them.

  37. The spirit of the law — the point of the entire Rooney Rule system in the first place — is not to ensure that the Raiders consider hiring a minority candidate.

    It’s not. The point of making the Raiders interview black coaches — even if they 100% want to hire Jon Gruden anyway — is to give exposure to black assistant coaches so that some other teams will hire them in the near future.

    If I were the Raiders, I would just come out and say that. And then I would announce that, for the next two weeks, the owner and the other decision makers will meet with any assistant coaches (on or off the record) and give them an interview and feedback, and then make that feedback available to other teams through the league office.

    The overkill will be a pain for the team, but won’t penalize the players and the fans for owners doing what plenty of other teams do (but without the one sham interview that they pretend isn’t a sham!)

  38. Yeah, they zonked the Lions for this back when they zeroed in on Marriucci. If you interview two guys and make a choice, ok, it’s a problem. If you want one guy, vet him and sign him it shouldn’t be a big deal. If things fell through with Gruden, then they probably would have done a bunch of interviews. Much ado about nothing.

  39. I appreciate the goal of the Rooney rule, but to say that a business owner can’t form an opinion that a known individual is the best person for a job and take action to hire that person without jumping through meaningless hoops is ridiculous.

  40. This organization is a racist organization and needs to be ignored in all forms. Society should not tolerate hate groups such as this one whose sole purpose is to hold one race above all others.

  41. indiapalealeblog says:
    January 10, 2018 at 8:49 pm

    Otherwise why have a rule if breaking it means nothing.
    —————————-
    And this is a large cause of the problems in the NFL.
    Rules mean nothing to the league office.
    Wearing shoes we don’t like ? You get fined
    Getting in a fight after a play is over? No biggie
    What’s a catch?
    Placing Rodgers on IR with no new injury? So what

    All of which are based on enforcing or not enforcing rules.

  42. “If there was never a vacancy the rule was never applicable”

    It doesn’t matter if they hired and fired or fired and hired the rule is still applicable.

  43. Wow, Mark Davis sounds like a real tool, all the way around……and it looks like he could afford a better toupee’….

  44. Isn’t Del Rio the one who got screwed here – by Gruden, the Raiders and his agent? Why isn’t anyone wailing and gnashing their teeth on his behalf?

  45. Ashley says:
    January 11, 2018 at 1:18 am
    I appreciate the goal of the Rooney rule, but to say that a business owner can’t form an opinion that a known individual is the best person for a job and take action to hire that person without jumping through meaningless hoops is ridiculous.
    ————————————

    DIfference is the owners AGREED to the rule

  46. bradygirl12 says:
    January 10, 2018 at 11:10 pm
    Gruden is a greedy ,egotistical back-stabber,and a liar as well. Just ask Jack Del Rio. his “good friend”. He knew he had the job and lied about it for weeks.

    *** ** *** ** *** ** ***

    You’ve obviously never worked in a corporate office.

  47. tylawspick6 says:

    January 10, 2018 at 8:59 pm

    nothing will happen

    raiders just got caught warming balls
    and nothing happened

    ________________________________________________________________

    nothing happened because they were practice balls, NOT game balls. typical patriots fan knows nothing about football because they only been following football since 2001

  48. The rule is yet another example of fix it ’till it is broken. It is, or certainly was a good idea but its implementation and wording have taken it to an extreme that turns it into a bad idea. Why would one question the Raiders when it comes to hiring minorities? They seem to be more than willing to hire a minority if they believe they are the best person for the job.

    The NFL is a joke, protecting the shield has become more like using the shield to do whatever we want.

  49. His contract was signed this week. Can the league penalize the Raiders over “agreement in principle”?

    Gruden could have changed his mind. One of the interviews could have blown the Raiders away. Its not done until its signed in my book. Granted the spirit of the rule was not met but the letter of it yes. The rule is flawed and outdated. More then a violation its a demonstration of its flaws.

  50. Seeing a lot of trolling. Fact is, the Raiders met the obligations set forth in the rule. Accept it.

  51. The owners voted the Rooney rule in, they should now vote it out of existence. I’m sure they’re tired of all the whining from this Fritz Pollard group like everybody else!

  52. It’s almost like they’re calling Mark Davis a racist because he hired Jon Gruden before interviewing any minority candidates, even though he has probably wanted Gruden for years… Welcome to 2018

  53. nhpats says:
    January 10, 2018 at 8:50 pm
    Ted Wells to the rescue!!

    Pats fans – get over Ted Wells. You were guilty, as you have been guilty in the past, and the comment is getting as old as “XXX on Line 1.” No one has “lines” anymore.

    But the rule IS outdated. There is not a problem in the NFL hiring minority coaches anymore than there is one hiring minority QBs. Both were problems, but that has been largely resolved. Token interviews are token interviews.

  54. An employer should be able to hire whomever he or she wants. In this case, it’s some guy named Gruden.

  55. Football is rigged. Watch field goals. That’s how you know. The ball will suddenly move to the direction that Vegas wants. Watch for yourself.

  56. The only thing worse than never considering minority candidates at all is wasting their time pretending to consider them. This wasn’t some opening that was up-in-the-air–they knew exactly who they wanted to hire. Imagine being the poor candidate who would have wasted his time interviewing for a job that was never really open in the first place.

  57. The funny thing here is that back in the Lamonica/Plunkett/Stabler days I wanted the Pats to BE the Raiders. They were swaggering, arrogant and thumbed their noses at anyone who challenged them on or off the field. Bent and broke rules at will. They were gifted a playoff win that the Pats deserved on a phantom RTP call. Then, one snowy night in Foxboro, NE finally overcame and became that team.

    Now the Raiders begin a new journey to return to relevance. They take their fist step by going back to old school and thumb their noses at the Rooney Rule, and most of the counrtry is OK with it. Funny old world, isn’t it?

  58. 70% of the NFL is African-American. That means a lot of white college football players are not good enough to play in the league. A sizeable amount of those white players still want to be involved in football so they decide to start a career as a football coach. You have heard the old adage those that can, do and those that can’t, teach.

  59. tylawspick6 says:
    January 10, 2018 at 8:59 pm
    nothing will happen

    raiders just got caught warming balls
    and nothing happened

    ————-

    Practice balls. Not game balls. Don’t let the facts get in the way of a ridiculous post.

  60. Lemmy Aksyadis says:
    January 11, 2018 at 8:07 am
    We didn’t break the rule! Look, we have Reggie.

    HOF player, reduced to a token. Shameful.

    ————–

    Um….Reggie is not in the hall of fame, unless you mean the college football hall of fame.

  61. The bottom line is the Raiders did interview minority candidates before signing Jon Gruden to a contract. We have rules and laws in America that we all live by. Nobody broke any rules here. Everybody can’t just make up their own rules after the fact. Check the date on the signed contract. Check the date of the minority interviews. Next case.

  62. charliecharger says:
    January 11, 2018 at 10:28 am
    The bottom line is the Raiders did interview minority candidates before signing Jon Gruden to a contract. We have rules and laws in America that we all live by. Nobody broke any rules here. Everybody can’t just make up their own rules after the fact. Check the date on the signed contract. Check the date of the minority interviews. Next case.

    Thank you for the Belichickian clarification.

  63. sportstalkfan says:
    January 11, 2018 at 10:27 am
    Lemmy Aksyadis says:
    January 11, 2018 at 8:07 am
    We didn’t break the rule! Look, we have Reggie.

    HOF player, reduced to a token. Shameful.

    ————–

    Um….Reggie is not in the hall of fame, unless you mean the college football hall of fame.

    I stand corrected. Guess I assumed that since he was credited by OJ with being a good part of the reason OJ was so successful as a RB. But he was a great O line player in his day.

  64. cuda1234 says:
    January 11, 2018 at 6:13 am

    Isn’t Del Rio the one who got screwed here – by Gruden, the Raiders and his agent? Why isn’t anyone wailing and gnashing their teeth on his behalf?
    ————————

    How did he get screwed? The guy is getting paid millions of dollars to sit on his keister.

  65. mogogo1 says:
    January 11, 2018 at 10:02 am

    Imagine being the poor candidate who would have wasted his time interviewing for a job that was never really open in the first place.
    ———————

    Those guys knew what was up. They probably got a nice bonus out of the deal.

  66. Oh ok… go through the motions of interviewing and wasting everyone’s time knowing full well Gruden is getting the job. So ridiculous.

  67. If it is a sham interview anyway, why not just do mock interviews for a week or 2 at some resort in the off season with NFL Execs from a few different front offices every year?

  68. vbe2 says:

    January 11, 2018 at 2:54 am

    This organization is a racist organization and needs to be ignored in all forms. Society should not tolerate hate groups such as this one whose sole purpose is to hold one race above all others.
    —————–
    Hey kid. Its time for you to study the OAKLAND RAIDERS HISTORY!

  69. Everyone seems to disagree with the Rooney Rule, yet, these same people go nuclear when a team dodges or violates it. I don’t understand it.

  70. silvernblacksabbath says:

    January 11, 2018 at 12:25 pm

    vbe2 says:

    January 11, 2018 at 2:54 am

    This organization is a racist organization and needs to be ignored in all forms. Society should not tolerate hate groups such as this one whose sole purpose is to hold one race above all others.
    —————–
    Hey kid. Its time for you to study the OAKLAND RAIDERS HISTORY!

    **************************************
    Um, I don’t think he was being serious.

  71. bradygirl12 says:

    January 10, 2018 at 11:10 pm

    Gruden is a greedy ,egotistical back-stabber,and a liar as well. Just ask Jack Del Rio. his “good friend”. He knew he had the job and lied about it for weeks.
    ————————
    ^^^^^ Patriot fan since 2001!!!!!!!

  72. Whether you like it or not, the Rooney Rule is a rule in place in the NFL. Teams can’t decide to simply skip it because they don’t feel like bringing in a minority, even if they have their next guy lined up.

    Seems like a lot of you here are fine with the Raiders circumventing this rule – did you feel the same way when the Pats circumvented the rule on where the cameras could be positioned? I didn’t think so…hypocrites.

  73. silvernblacksabbath says:
    January 11, 2018 at 12:54 pm
    bradygirl12 says:

    January 10, 2018 at 11:10 pm

    Gruden is a greedy ,egotistical back-stabber,and a liar as well. Just ask Jack Del Rio. his “good friend”. He knew he had the job and lied about it for weeks.
    ————————
    ^^^^^ Patriot fan since 2001!!!!!!!

    You know there Grandpa, not everyone was born in the 40’s or 50’s. Some people can’t help that they weren’t born in teh leather helmet era. I suppose there are no new raider fans? Only fans with walkers and depends?

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