The NFL officially announced some “new steps to enhance diversity” coming out of Tuesday’s virtual owners meetings.
The attention-catching proposal that involved improving draft picks to incentive minority hires was tabled but the following changes were among the approved items:
The resolution changes the current Anti-Tampering Policy by establishing a system that prohibits a club from denying 1) an assistant coach the opportunity to interview with a new team for a bona fide Offensive Coordinator, Defensive Coordinator, or Special Teams Coordinator position; (2) a non-high-level/non-secondary football executive from interviewing for a bona fide Assistant General Manager position. In either case, a contract could not be negotiated or signed until after the conclusion of the employer club’s playing season; and 3) requires all clubs submit in writing an organizational reporting structure for the coaching staff with job descriptions for any coach who is a coordinator or co-coordinator within that structure. The resolution also requires that any dispute regarding whether the new team is offering a “bona fide” position will be submitted promptly to the Commissioner, whose determination shall be final, binding and not subject to further review.
The enhancements to the Rooney Rule include changes both on and off-the-field. Clubs will now be required to interview at least two external minority candidates for head coach vacancies; at least one minority candidate for any of the three coordinator vacancies; and at least one external minority candidate for the senior football operations or general manager position.
These changes are worth highlighting as they could impact the future of Eagles assistant head coach/running backs coach Duce Staley.
Previously, the Eagles would’ve been able to block Staley from leaving Philly to take an offensive coordinator job elsewhere. That’s no longer the case. And Staley could be more drawing more interest than ever since teams will be required to interview at least one minority candidate for coordinator vacancies and two for head coaching vacancies.
Staley reportedly wasn’t interviewed when the Eagles were searching for an offensive coordinator earlier this year. In potentially related news, Staley reportedly inquired about an opening on South Carolina’s coaching staff.
But now Staley might not have to leave the NFL ranks to further advance his coaching career. The NFL’s new diversity initiative could very well help him move up the ladder. Such an outcome would be great for Staley but it would also be a noteworthy loss for the Eagles.