The NFL is making some changes to the Rooney Rule, and soon.
The league “is immediately instituting changes” to the rule, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported Monday. The rule reportedly would require franchisees to interview at least two “external minority candidates” for head coach and one minority candidate for any coordinator, football operations and general manager jobs. (Teams currently are required to interview at least one ethnic-minority candidate for head coaching and other senior football positions.)
Additionally, teams and the league office will be required to include minority and female applicants for senior-level positions. The rule will go into effect after Tuesday’s virtual league meeting, per Pelissero.
Teams must interview 1 external minority candidate for senior football ops/GM jobs, too. And clubs and the league office must now include minorities and/or female applicants for senior-level positions, including club president. All effective after virtual league meeting tomorrow.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) May 18, 2020
News of the change comes roughly one week after it was reported the league was considering rewarding teams that hired minority candidates with improved draft picks. That measure will be voted on during Tuesday’s meeting, per NFL Media’s Jim Trotter.
Implemented in 2003, the Rooney Rule was developed to help ensure minority coaching candidates would be considered for senior-level positions. And while the rule initially helped increase the number of minority coaches in the league, things have been heading in the opposite direction in recent years. In fact, there only are three minority head coaches in the league as of 2020, the same as in 2003 when the rule went into place, per the San Francisco Chronicle.
So, it seems an update is in order. And the league appears to be on top of it.