Rooney Rule still in play for Chiefs

It hasn’t come up, and it might not. But if it should, here’s the answer to a question that some have posed since the Kansas City Chiefs hired general manager Scott Pioli on Wednesday.

Pioli’s meetings with Chiefs coach Herm Edwards don’t meet the requirements of the Rooney Rule, which mandates that NFL teams interview at least one minority head-coaching candidate.

The interpretation of the Rooney Rule is that teams can’t meet with an incumbent minority for the purpose of creating a vacancy and claim that they have followed the rule. The rule isn’t followed unless a legitimate minority candidate is interviewed.

It’s permissible for Pioli to fire Edwards, but it isn’t permissible for him to hire, say, Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz without first interviewing at least one minority head-coaching candidate.

Pioli said Wednesday that he plans to meet with Edwards before making any decisions about whom the Chiefs’ head coach will be. If Pioli retains Edwards, this point is moot. But if Pioli moves in another direction, he and the Chiefs still must comply with the Rooney Rule.

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