NFL reportedly ponders incentivizing minority hiring

FILE PHOTO: The NFL logo is pictured on a football at an event in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., November 30, 2017. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri/File Photo

Looking to incentivize diversity in the ranks of head coaches and general managers, the NFL reportedly might allow teams to improve their draft status based on minority hires.

According to NFL.com and ESPN, the proposal would allow teams to move up 10 places in the third round of the draft ahead of the second year under a newly hired minority GM. For newly hired head coaches of color, teams would get a six-place jump in the third round of the draft before his second season.

Should a team hire a minority head coach and GM in the same year, the rise would be 16 places in the third round — potentially into the second round.

Teams also would get a five-spot bump in the fourth round ahead of the third season of diverse head coaches or GMs. Also, if a minority quarterbacks coach is retained beyond one season, his team would get an additional draft pick at the end of the fourth round.

The NFL also is looking to eliminate the rule that allows teams to block assistant coaches from moving to another team to take a coordinator job. The change is viewed as helpful for minority head-coaching applicants, as teams generally want candidates to have coordinator experience.

The proposals reportedly will be discussed Tuesday during the owners’ virtual meeting, with 24 of the 32 teams needing to vote in favor in order for the changes to be enacted.

Only one of five head-coaching vacancies this offseason went to a minority candidate, with the Washington Redskins hiring former Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera. According to NFL.com, only three of the past 20 head-coaching openings were filled by a person of color.

The NFL established the Rooney Rule in 2003, requiring teams to interview minority candidates for all head-coaching and senior football operations jobs.

—Field Level Media

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