NFL executive vice president of human resources Robert Gulliver released the following statement on hiring of head coaches and general managers:
“While there has been full compliance with the interview requirements of the Rooney Rule and we wish the new head coaches and general managers much success, the hiring results this year have been unexpected and reflect a disappointing lack of diversity. The Rooney Rule has been a valuable tool in expanding diversity and inclusion in hiring practices, but there is more work to do, especially around increasing and strengthening the pipeline of diverse candidates for head coach and senior football executive positions.
“We have already started the process of developing a plan for additional steps that will better ensure more diversity and inclusion on a regular basis in our hiring results. We look forward to discussing these steps with our advisers to ensure that our employment, development and equal opportunity programs are both robust and successful."
Eight teams filled head-coaching vacancies in January, though not one hired a minority. Last year, Romeo Crennel was the only minority head coach hired, and he was fired on Dec. 31. The Rooney Rule requires teams to interview minority candidates for head-coaching and front-office positions.