NFL owners to discuss expansion to Rooney Rule in hopes to increase minority hiring

Football coach Matt Rhule.
Matt Rhule, head coach of the Carolina Panthers, is one of five hired to fill NFL vacancies for the 2020 season.
(Getty Images)

The NFL intends to make changes to the Rooney Rule to further encourage diversity in hiring, with one proposal using draft positioning as an incentive to teams.

League owners, who will convene via conference call Tuesday, are scheduled to vote on multiple proposals, a person familiar with the situation confirmed.

According to the Associated Press, the NFL will amend the rule by requiring teams to interview at least two minority candidates from outside the organization for head coach openings, and at least one minority candidate must be interviewed for a coordinator’s spot.

There are two related proposals under consideration. One would allow assistant coaches to be interviewed at any time for coordinator jobs with other clubs. The other, first reported by NFL Network, would use draft positioning as an incentive to hire more minority candidates.


There were five head-coaching jobs available after last season and none were filled by African Americans. Hires included Joe Judge by the New York Giants, Mike McCarthy by the Dallas Cowboys, Matt Ruhle by the Carolina Panthers, Ron Rivera by the Washington Redskins and Kevin Stefanski by the Cleveland Browns. Rivera is Latino, but is not an addition to the league minority total since he coached last season with the Carolina Panthers.

Only three of the NFL’s 32 teams have African American head coaches.

The NFL is allowing teams to open their facilities on a limited basis Tuesday, but the Rams and Chargers will remain closed, team officials said Monday.