The Fritz Pollard Alliance, a group dedicated to promoting diversity and equality of job opportunities in NFL front offices, is asking the league to investigate whether the Oakland Raiders violated the "Rooney Rule" when hiring Jon Gruden as head coach.
Cyrus Mehri and N. Jeremi Duru, legal counsel for the group, voiced concern to The Associated Press as to whether Raiders owner Mark Davis reached agreement with Gruden before interviewing any minority candidates.
"As soon as we learned of the reports, we formally requested that the NFL thoroughly investigate the matter to conclusively determine whether the Rooney Rule was violated - and if it was violated, to impose an appropriate punishment," the pair said.
Davis said during Gruden's introductory press conference on Tuesday that he finally believed he had secured the former broadcaster as new head coach prior to the Raiders' game on Christmas against the Philadelphia Eagles.
Jack Del Rio wouldn't be fired until after the season ended a week later, and Davis admitted he wouldn't have made the move if he didn't believe Gruden would agree to coach the team.
The minority candidates interviewed by the Raiders prior to Gruden's official hiring on Tuesday were Oakland's tight ends coach Bobby Johnson and USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin. If Davis had indeed already gotten a commitment from Gruden, that could be in violation of the "Rooney Rule."