NFL approves plan to reward teams for developing minority candidates
NFL owners on Tuesday approved a proposal that will reward teams for developing minority coaches and front office executives.
The new rules, which are only awaiting approval from the NFL Players Association, state that a team that loses a minority coach or general manager that is hired as coach or GM of another team will receive a third-round compensatory draft pick in the next two drafts, as long as the coach or GM was with the original team for at least two years. A team that loses both a minority coach and GM would receive third-round compensatory picks in the next three drafts.
An example of where the new changes could apply is with Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, who is a popular head coaching candidate and has been with the Chiefs since 2013. If a team like the Houston Texans hires Bieniemy as its next head coach, Kansas City would receive third-round compensatory picks in the 2021 and 2022 NFL Drafts.
One concern with the system is that it does not reward the team that hires the minority head coach or GM. That could lead to a situation where a team is interested in hiring a minority candidate from a rival team. The hiring team may be hesitant to hire the candidate and reward its rival with one or more third-round draft picks. That did not deter owners from approving the proposal, however.
A previous proposal called for teams to move up several spots in the draft if they hired and retained a minority coach or general manager, but that idea was tabled. One black former NFL head coach called the proposal offensive.
Pressure has been building within the NFL to find ways to create more opportunities for minority coaches. Bieniemy was considered by many to be a better candidate than some head coaches who were hired last offseason, and that led to frustration around the league.