Advocates for a more diverse NFL received some excellent news this week.
On Tuesday, the NFL Network reported that the league has expanded the Rooney Rule to promote more diversity in its coaching ranks. Teams are now required to conduct outside interviews with a minority/female candidate for all vacant quarterback coaching positions.
The Rooney Rule is named after Dan Rooney, the former owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers. It mandates that teams interview minorities outside the organisation for coaching and front office positions. Since the Rooney Rule was implemented, 17 minority head coaches have been hired in the NFL, including Super Bowl champion Mike Tomlin.
The expansion of the Rooney Rule wasn’t the only change the NFL made. Teams are now prohibited from conducting head coaching interviews with candidates employed by other organisations until three days after the conclusion of the candidate’s regular season. The change is aimed to reduce tampering and allow coaches more time to prepare for their interviews.