Twitter’s top joke of the week comes from former NFL receiver Andrew Hawkins: It’s called the Rooney Rule because the Steelers are the only team who takes it seriously. Like all great jokes it rings true and that’s a sad reflection of the current head coach pool in the NFL. Following the firings of David Culley by the Texans and Brian Flores by the Dolphins, Mike Tomlin is now the only black head coach in the league.
Culley’s dismissal was disappointing but not surprising. However, the way that Miami finished the season (8-1), Flores getting the boot is the kind of thing that makes the NFL look hypocritical and regressive when it tries to pay lip service to social justice movements.
Unfortunately, Flores and Culley are just the latest examples of black coaches who got fired for no good reason at all, even after a successful run in many cases. One of the worst in recent years was Jim Caldwell, who led the Lions to a 36-28 record and two playoff appearances!!! before he was fired after the 2017 season.
A lot of people believe Caldwell deserves another chance to be a head coach at this level, including Suns point guard Chris Paul, who shared his thoughts on Twitter today.
Seahawks free safety Quandre Diggs was quick to agree.
Caldwell’s successor was Matt Patricia, who went 13-29-1 before he got fired. This year, the Lions went 3-13-1 under Dan Campbell. While Campbell’s squad shows a lot more fight than it has any right to, the results have obviously been awful since Caldwell has been gone.
As for Paul, his Suns currently have the best record in the NBA at 31-9, roughly halfway through the league’s regular season.
As for Diggs, he’s coming off a spectacular but ultimately heartbreaking year. He defended his heart out the entire 2021 season and earned himself a Pro Bowl nod plus five All Pro votes. However, Diggs also suffered a major leg injury (broken fibula, dislocated ankle) in Arizona in the last quarter of the season.
Diggs will become a free agent in March but it would be a very bad idea from a team-culture perspective for the Seahawks not to pay him at this point given the fact that he was already overdue for an extension.
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