The Fritz Pollard Alliance is proposing an expansion of fellowships for minority candidates in coaching and scouting roles with NFL teams.
According to Jenna Laine of ESPN.com, Fritz Pollard Alliance chairman John Wooten said they are proposing the addition of two entry-level positions on coaching staffs as part of the Bill Walsh NFL Diversity Coaching Fellowship. Additionally, they hope to see the positions expanded to a full year instead of only being able to assist from offseason workouts programs through training camp.
They want to see similar changes to the Nunn-Wooten Scouting Fellowship as well with applications open to minorities and women candidates.
“This is how you build,” Wooten said. “If you want to build the programs that keep making the league better, have better coaches, have better scouts as it relates to minorities, you’ve gotta put them in [all] the situations.”
The NFL is coming off a head coach hiring cycle that saw five black head coaches lose their jobs (Steve Wilks, Vance Joseph, Marvin Lewis, Todd Bowles and Hue Jackson) with only one opening being filled by a minority candidate. The Miami Dolphins are expected to name New England Patriots defensive coordinator Brian Flores as their next head coach following Super Bowl LIII.
Wooten said the group will formally present the changes to the league at the scouting combine next month and anticipates the changes will be adopted.
“I think they will [adopt those changes],” Wooten said. “When they come together, I think they will.”