Art Rooney: NFL will review Rooney Rule, could consider expanding it

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The Rooney Rule is named after late Steelers owner Dan Rooney. His son, current Steelers owner Art Rooney II, agrees the rule didn’t work as intended this season.

“Where we are right now, is not where we want to be, not where we need to be,” Rooney told Steve Wyche of NFL Media on Tuesday.

The policy was established in 2003 with an intent to give minority candidates more opportunities for head coaching and football operations jobs. But the league has come under fire after the current hiring cycle ended with only one minority candidate hired as a head coach.

Ron Rivera’s hiring by Washington marked the second consecutive season only one minority candidate earned a head coaching opportunity. The four other teams with head coaching vacancies — the Cowboys, Panthers, Browns and Giants — interviewed at least one diverse candidate as required by the rule but did not hire a minority.

Rooney told Wyche the NFL’s Workplace Diversity Committee will review what occurred during this hiring cycle to determine what can be done to improve opportunities for minority candidates.

The rule could expand to include coordinator hirings or could increase the required number of minority interviews for head coaching or front office positions.

“Obviously, we have to look at what we can do differently now,” Rooney said. “Perhaps even expand the Rooney Rule into some of the lower levels, perhaps the coordinator level. Just to make sure the minority opportunities are there. . . .

“I think in general when you look at this year’s process, and like I said, we’re going sit down and look at it early. As it appears right now, there just weren’t very many minorities in the process at all this year, and I’m not sure why that is. It doesn’t need to be that way. We have about one-third of the coaches in the National Football League are from the minority communities. That’s really not a bad pipeline. And so, the question is: Why aren’t more of those people getting interviews? Why aren’t more of those people advancing through the process? Like I said, there are a lot of pieces to it that we have to look at. We have a lot of work to do that.”

The Fritz Pollard Alliance, an advocacy group that fights to increase minority representation in the NFL, released a statement Monday calling this year’s hiring cycle a “blemish on the National Football League.”

47 responses to “Art Rooney: NFL will review Rooney Rule, could consider expanding it

  1. Just dump the rule. It is a farce. Why force the issue? If a coach is good enough and can interview well he will get a job regardless of color. Right now the percentage of black coaches is the same as black men in the population. No issues. Why are we still talking about it?

  2. A stupid rule which obviously is never gonna work look what just happened Buckner helps improve our D-line 30 sacks and 8th against the run yet he gets fired for 70 year old white guy who’s defense in Dallas regressed so stop with the b.s Rooney rule crap if the owners really cared they could do more instead of the same we need to do more speech each year even the Rooney’s sound ridiculous saying that every year….

  3. So five hc jobs were available and 20% of those jobs went to minorities, yet that isn’t good enough?

  4. “Upon further review, the ruling off the field has been overturned.”

    Hopefully, someone can figure out how to fix the problems that will satisfy everyone involved, or at least a large chunk of them.

  5. This is crazy this has nothing to do with race ,If you’re not good enough to be a head coach then you’re not plain and simple,Black, white ,yellow ,green, brown doesn’t matter

  6. Owners care only about one color….green. If you can produce green, they don’t care what color you are.

  7. I’m all for diversity and the Rooney Rule, but maybe the minority HC candidate crop just wasn’t as good during this hiring period compared to past hiring periods.

  8. Brilliant. In an effort to appease the liberals we need to expand a rule that says you will be forced to interview a person based on color alone. Nothing racist about that at all.

    Affirmative action is one of the stupidest thing liberals ever invented.
    When your house is on fire do you want the best fire fighter to show up to get your kids out of a burning house, or the 30th best who got the job ahead of more qualified people because of added points assigned to their color?

  9. “Where we are right now, is not where we want to be, not where we need to be”

    For that statement to have any meaning whatsoever, there must be a specific number that is where “they want to be” and where “they need to be”.

    But no one ever gets specific. Until they do, this all has no meaning and should be viewed with suspicion.

  10. i hope the day comes when all the black players boycott the nfl just for one week during the regular season to illustrate that without them the league is nothing!

  11. The premise that identity ought to be a consideration for a coaching hire is exactly what regression looks like.

  12. I hope one day that the black players do boycott to show how over represented they are on teams. Unless and until we address racism for what it is now been developed – as a political wedge issue – then we will never be able to address it. Having too many black players is no more proof that black players are better than to suggest that coaches aren’t hired because they are black. What we have is a comfort zone – teams are unwilling to consider non-minority players because of the perception that wearing athletic wear makes you an athlete. Minority coaching candidates are not excluded because they are minorities – there is a comfort zone recycling old coaches because owners have been bitten by failed first timers. Until they find a Joe Gibbs. Until they find a Vrabel. Until they find a Rivera. There are foolish teams that don’t want to pay a premium for coaching talent and will settle for one of their kind.

    I firmly believe that racism does not exist – too many people profit from exploiting it one way or the other. Let the fools exclude based upon race and let those fools fail. Those who don’t see a color bar will make better decisions. You cannot solve racims by forcing racism onto those who haven’t perpetuated it. And stop rubbing our noses in the fake racism that is used for profit.

  13. So interview at least 3 minority candidates? How about require a team to hire a minority HC if their previous 2 HCs were white? Maybe fine a team everytime it doesn’t hire a minority HC? So silly.

    Chances are if the Steelers hired someone else after Cowher, they would probably have more than 6 titles.

  14. Owners will still hire those who they want. It’s all about money and winning games. If a team is forced to interview minorities, when they already have an idea who they want, be it a minority or not, all these other minority interviews will just be token ones.

  15. So, if I get this correctly, 32 owners are going to try to force 32 owners to hire coaches not based upon their skills. How about having the nfl start up a developmental league to include hcs, assistants and the like along with players.

  16. Rooney is just being a loyal Democrat by appeasing the pro-PC media and critics.
    Change the name of the rule to the Black affirmative action for head coach position rule.
    This would take the burden off of Rooney so he won’t be forced to hire black coaches in perpetuity.

  17. snaponrules, I have a friend. Her father in law worked a city job his entire life. Same company also through the years hired his 2 sons, daughter and 2 grandchildren. Just by being related.

    This had been going on everywhere for decade upon decade. It left little room for minority hires, hence Affirmative Action.

    The doors were not open in police depts, fire depts, nor union jobs for minority applicants. We all saw it growing up.

    This family I mentioned are hard drinking, border line alcoholic pot smoking employees who were always the first to decry A. Action.

    No way in hell there aren’t minorities who could do just as good a job or better if only given an opportunity.

    I see former athletes who are black on TV all the time. They are easily as smart as any white former coach on tv.

    A coaching job is an opportunity to excel, sometimes lightning strikes, most often it doesn’t. At least give them a chance.

    It’s a sin that this crap is still going on.

  18. NFL gets heat and pushes unqualified candidates to the top screwing over qualified coaches for agenda. They do poorly and get fired then hiring the qualified coaches then the complaining starts again. I’m just curious how the female coach got a job with the 49ers. I listed her coaching resume below before Shanahan.

  19. Labor laws and anti-discrimination laws will prevent the NFL from putting a number or percentage of black coaches in place.
    The media always fails to mention how labor laws will prevent the NFL from discriminating against white coaching candidates just because they are white.
    Yes folks, the laws can work for white folks too.

  20. Where does it end? Will teams now be required to interview minorities for the Equipment Manager position? What about for every scouting position that opens up? And will teams now be looking for CB’s that aren’t black? Could use some diversity in the secondary these days. All of it is stupid, just let the best/most qualified man win the job.

  21. Excluding a candidate because of his or her race would be stupid if they are the most qualified. These owners are all billionaires and I don’t think they got that way because they are stupid. If they are they will not succeed running an nfl team.

  22. Affirmative action (Rooney Rule) is a failure ! Move on and hire the best person regardless of skin color!

  23. i hope the day comes when all the black players boycott the nfl just for one week during the regular season to illustrate that without them the league is nothing!
    Sorry man, that ain’t happening. These guys live paycheck to paycheck because they have no idea about how to manage their money. They can’t even arrange a boycott in advance for the CBA because they have to have flashy crap.

  24. Not until there is a quota for White DBs on every team.

  25. The Rooney Rule was never meant to stop at just the Rooney Rule. American Society as a whole doesn’t provide enough opportunities for people of color to succeed, and by the time anyone gets anywhere near a Head Coaching position white guys have had 50+ years of advantage. There is no way Sean McVay gets his job at his age if he is a Person of Color. If you’re serious about racial diversity, and I don’t think the NFL really is, you apply it to all levels of the sport, not just HC, and you take draft picks when cycles like the previous one occur.

  26. I hate generalizing, but people just don’t get it…


    Why is this concept so hard to understand? All these rules do, is make owners jump through hoops. They will do whatever you force them to do, and then they will hire the person they wanted all along.

    This Rooney rule is, and has been, completely stupid the entire time. It’s insulting to minorities.

    This is a business. The owner will do whatever they want if they think it will help them win.(earn money)

    Do you really think they care about skin color? Most of the team’s players are minorities. I don’t see anyone whining about that as a problem.

    I don’t see white people complaining about how only 30% of NFL players are white, despite the fact that the white people make up something like 70% of the US population.

    This whole race argument is stupid. It’s a merit based industry. It sorts itself out. Leave it alone.

  27. Expand it? This rule is like forcing every team to bring a white guy into camp to try out at cornerback because most all cornerbacks are black. Teams are going to put whom they think is going to perform best at every position regardless of race. When it comes to coaches they don’t often get it right however that’s due to incompetence not racism.

  28. I don’t get comparing the percentage of black coaches to the overall black population in the US. If you need to make a comparison it should be to the percentage of black players in the NFL.

  29. No it’s not because it literally doesnt apply to players. Ever stop to consider that maybe teams don’t have competent Persons of Color to hire because no Person of Color was given the chance to develop those skills?

    In the NBA they get rid of blatantly racist owners. The NFL shouldn’t be so afraid of trying to bring a culture change to the geriatric white men who own the teams.

  30. If they want to encourage minority hiring they need to make a substantial change. Offer compensatory style draft picks for minority coaches on the payroll. Tying actual employment to a competitive advantage will result in change. Create three classes of coaches. Head and coordinators, position coaches, sundry assistants. Award an extra 3rd round pick for a head and coordinator category that is majority minority or women. A 4th rounder if your position coaches are likewise mostly minorities or women. And a 5th rounder for sundry assistants.

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