Marvin Lewis Blasts NFL’s Minority Hiring Proposal: ‘Like Having Jim Crow Laws’

Marvin Lewis
AP Photo/Don Wright

Ex-Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis blasted the NFL for proposing to give teams an incentive to hire minority coaches by boosting draft picks, Lewis likened the tabled proposal to having “Jim Crow laws.”

Lewis called the NFL’s proposed draft pick incentive program, “definitely offensive.” He added, “It was like having Jim Crow laws.”

“Draft picks are like gold,” Lewis said of the now shelved idea. “That doesn’t make a lot of sense to me. As a head coach, no one wants to be hired or put in that position.

Still, Lewis does support the expanded Rooney Rule which would require the interview of minority candidates for general manager positions.

“We had come a long way as far as assistant coaches, but we never made any inroads in management,” Lewis continued. “This will be a plus requiring more than one minority to be interviewed because it will cause them to take a deeper dive. This will allow more minorities more opportunities.

“That’s the shame of it all,” Lewis added. “A lot of people are being cut out.”

Today there are only four minority coaches and two minority general managers in the 32-team NFL.

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