Monday, February 20, 2006

The Rundown on New NFL Head Coaches

Ten head coach vacancies were filled in the offseason, largely by up-from-the-ranks coordinators. published a rundown of each situation.

Some once highly regarded, but recently disgraced, head coaches did not find new positions and are now offensive or defensive coordinators at new teams run by their buddies. It pays to network.

The NFL instituted the Fritz Pollard project, an affirmative action program whereby teams with head coach openings must interview an African-American candidate. None of the newly hired head coaches are African-American. I'm not counting Herm Edwards or Art Shell as new coaches. This is surprising given the success enjoyed by Marvin Lewis, Tony Dungy and Lovey Smith; especially Lewis and Smith who turned woeful franchises into playoff teams in two seasons. NFL rosters have been majority Black for, oh, three decades or more. You wouldn't know it based on the number of African-American players who get to extend their career into coaching or the front office.

Art Shell's return to coaching brings the number of Black NFL head coaches to seven, the most ever at one time.

  1. Tony Dungy, Colts
  2. Art Shell, Raiders
  3. Herm Edwards, Chiefs
  4. Lovey Smith, Bears
  5. Romeo Crennel, Browns
  6. Marvin Lewis, Bengals
  7. Dennis Green, Cardinals

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