NFL Determines Raiders Complied with Rooney Rule During Hiring of Jon Gruden

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistJanuary 19, 2018

Oakland Raiders new head coach Jon Gruden answers questions during an NFL football press conference Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, in Alameda, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Marcio Jose Sanchez/Associated Press

The NFL has ruled that the Oakland Raiders complied with the Rooney Rule before hiring Jon Gruden as their head coach.

Per NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy, via NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, the league talked with Gruden, Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie and owner Mark Davis about the hiring process and noted the Raiders interviewed tight ends coach Bobby Johnson and USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Jan. 12 that the NFL was looking into whether or not the Raiders violated the Rooney Rule after the Fritz Pollard Alliance expressed concern over the process of interviewing minority candidates.

ESPN's Josina Anderson reported Jan. 8 that Martin was the second minority candidate interviewed by the Raiders before they hired Gruden, though the report doesn't specify when Martin's interview took place.

Davis said at Gruden's introductory press conference Jan. 9 the two sides solidified an agreement on Christmas Eve, per Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk.

Detroit Lions president Matt Millen received a $200,000 fine in 2003 for violating the Rooney Rule by not interviewing any minority coaching candidates prior to hiring Steve Mariucci as head coach.

The Rooney Rule was established in 2003 to give minority candidates an equal opportunity when teams hire head coaches and other management positions.

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