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NFL proposing plan to incentivize minority hiring with draft position

Tony Dungy joins Mike Florio to talk about how the NFL can evolve the Rooney Rule to help minority candidates get head coaching opportunities.

Commissioner Roger Goodell admitted during Super Bowl week that more needed to be done to create opportunities for minority coach and General Manager candidates.

Now, he’s going to do something about it, perhaps including draft incentives for teams.

According to Jim Trotter of NFL Network, the league will present a pair of resolutions at Tuesday’s virtual meeting to try to create more movement.

The first would remove the barrier that prevents assistants under contract with a team to interview for “bona fide” coordinator jobs with other teams, with Goodell reserving the right to determine if it’s an actual coordinator role.

The other, more revolutionary idea, would allow teams to improve their draft position by hiring minority candidates.

Under the proposal, a team that hires a minority head coach would move up six spots in the third round of the following year’s draft. Hiring a minority for the top personnel job would create a 10-spot improvement. Ostensibly a team that hired a minority coach and G.M. would see their third-round pick improve by 16 slots in draft order.

Also, a team’s fourth-round pick would improve by five spots in the coach or G.M.'s third year.

Hiring a minority candidate as a quarterbacks coach would bring a team a compensatory fourth-round pick.

If a minority assistant became a coordinator elsewhere, his old team would get a fifth-round compensatory pick. Losing a minority coach head coach or G.M. would bring the old team a third-round compensatory pick.

Whether a few spots in draft order or an extra mid-round pick would change things fundamentally remains to be seen. It’s also unclear whether owners — who generally make big changes slowly — will go for it.

Last year, only one of five head coaching jobs was filled by a minority, leaving the league at status quo since Ron Rivera was fired by Carolina and hired by Washington. That kept the league at four minority coaches, along with Mike Tomlin, Anthony Lynn, and Brian Flores. When the Browns named Andrew Berry G.M., he doubled the number of minorities in those jobs (joining Chris Grier in Miami).