According to Commissioner Roger Goodell, the NFL will eventual..."/> According to Commissioner Roger Goodell, the NFL will eventual..."/> According to Commissioner Roger Goodell, the NFL will eventual..."/>

NFL to Implement ‘Rooney Rule’ for Women Executive Candidates

Aug 15, 2015; Glendale, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals president Michael Bidwill talks with coaching intern Jen Welter prior to the game against the Kansas City Chiefs in a preseason NFL football game at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 15, 2015; Glendale, AZ, USA; Arizona Cardinals president Michael Bidwill talks with coaching intern Jen Welter prior to the game against the Kansas City Chiefs in a preseason NFL football game at University of Phoenix Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports /
facebooktwitterreddit

According to Commissioner Roger Goodell, the NFL will eventually implement a “Rooney Rule” when it comes to interviewing women as candidates for potential executive positions:

"“You can see that progress is being made,” said Goodell on Thursday. “And our commitment is we have something called the Rooney Rule, which requires us to make sure when we have an opening, that on the team or the league level, that we are going to interview a diverse slate of candidates. Well we’re going to make that commitment and we’re going to formalize that we, as a league, are going to do that with women as well in all of our executive positions. Again, we’re going to keep making progress here and make a difference.”"

It’s a move that’s been long overdue, but it indicates that progress is at least being made as it relates to gender equality in the NFL–even if it’s baby steps.

As NFL.com writer Kevin Patra points out, women are equally deserving of filling potential NFL executive positions. Quite frankly, they’ve already proven as much in the past in their limited opportunities:

"“Amy Trask famously excelled as the CEO of the Oakland Raiders for 16 years,” Patra writes. “Dawn Aponte still holds the position of executive vice president of football administration for the Miami Dolphins.”"

Of course, the league has already made other strides over the past year regarding gender equality in other league positions.

Specifically, the Buffalo Bills recently hired Kathyrn Smith as a special teams quality control coach, becoming the first full-time female assistant coach in the league’s history.

Meanwhile, the Arizona Cardinals named Jen Welter as a training camp assistant coaching intern, where she worked with inside linebackers. However, her internship concluded at the end of the team’s preseason, but it still effectively made her the first female coach in NFL history.

The league’s current hiring situation is still far from perfect regarding gender equality, but at the very least, progress is being made.