Rams’ Raheem Morris: My head-coach interviews haven’t been a sham


Raheem Morris thinks all of his NFL head-coach interviews were legitimate, even if he has been hired just one out of five times.

In light of former Dolphins head coach Brian Flores’ lawsuit alleging racist hiring practices in the NFL and that the Giants conducted a “sham” head-coach interview in order to comply with the Rooney Rule, Morris, the Rams defensive coordinator, was asked this week about his own experiences. Former Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis and the agent for Teryl Austin later echoed “sham” interview experiences.

“When I heard the lawsuit, I thought it was just unfortunate that we even have to talk about this,” Morris said. “Obviously we have a lack of diversity hiring in the NFL, and that’s clear-cut. Fortunately for me, I’ve been on five interviews in my career, and I didn’t feel that way in any of them.”

The Steelers’ Mike Tomlin — one of Morris’ mentors — and new Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel are the only black head coaches, with two vacancies remaining.

Morris interviewed with the Broncos before the job went to Josh McDaniels in 2009. He then was promoted internally by the Buccaneers and lasted three seasons. After a long gap, he interviewed with the Falcons — where he had just gone 4-7 as the interim head coach — and Jaguars last offseason before those jobs went to Arthur Smith and Urban Meyer, respectively.

Raheem Morris said he doesn’t believe any of his head-coaching interviews have been shams.

Morris interviewed twice with the Vikings last month but the job is earmarked for his Rams colleague, offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell. The Irvington, N.J., and Hofstra University product was not one of the six candidates interviewed by the Giants last month even though five were defensive-minded.

“I really felt like the people in those organizations did a great job in how they treated me, but that doesn’t mean that works for everybody and that doesn’t mean everybody gets treated the same way,” Morris said. “I can only speak to my personal experience and how it’s gone for me. I feel bad that happened to Flo. I don’t discredit anything he says. He’s a man of honor, a man of character, and I’m going to do nothing but support him in his efforts to be the best version of himself.”


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