Is The NFL Preventing Black Ownership?

NFL | February 5, 2021

The conversation regarding race in the world is a topic that needs the utmost care when being talked about. Yes, it is an uncomfortable conversation to have, but it is one that needs to be talked about.

When it comes to people of color owning NFL franchise they are few and far between. Out of the 32 franchise’s in the NFL only two people of color are owners. Which for whatever reason is shocking.

Only Kim Pegula, who is a woman of South Korean descent and is part owner of the Buffalo Bills, and Shahid Rafiq Khan who is a Pakistani born American who is the owner of the Jaguars are the only owners of color. The other 30 are all white.

Is the NFL preventing black ownership? That in itself is a tricky question and just by looking at the numbers (two out of 32 owners are of color) then there is a case to be made. Why is it that only two people of color hold high ranking positions as owners?

It is not just owners where this is a potential issue and when looking across the league, out of all the 32 teams, there are just three head coaches and two general managers are black. Many people firmly believe that there is a plethora of qualified black coaches and GMs in waiting, yet for whatever reason teams just are not hiring them.

Is it because the NFL has some sort of agenda against Africa Americans? Looking at the numbers you could make that argument as to why is the league so white-dominant. Is it simply because that is just how it has worked out or is there something more sinister going on?

The other side of the argument is that the NFL does not have anything to do with who should be owners as it just comes down to money, not ethnicity. Richard Roth, who is an attorney that specializes in sports spoke to and gave an insight as to why there are more white NFL owners than African-American:

“Historically the wealth in this country belongs to white males. It’s the same reason most Fortune 500 companies, most law firms, etc. are owned by white males. I do believe you’ll see more [people of color] break that glass ceiling. It just takes a little longer because of the size of the money.”

So when you take Roth’s words into account and you believe what he is saying then it is clear that the NFL does not have anything against African- American ownership. Another interesting stat is that 68.7% of NFL players are African-American and 28.6% are Hispanic white and the other 4% are Asian-Pacific Islander so if there was an agenda against African-Americans then wouldn’t those numbers be more lob-sided towards white people?

Ultimately it depends on how you chose to look at it. You could look at the only two people of color who own an NFL franchise and make your thoughts based on that, or you can look at the percentage of African-American players who make up the vast majority of players in the league and go from there.

Either way, it sparks heated debate and in this particular situation, everyone is going to have an opinion and it is up to you to decide where to stand regarding it.

Adam Schultz

Adam has authored hundreds of articles covering the NFL and football. Adam currently covers Bayern Munich in the German Bundesliga as well as Arsenal in the English Premier League. Adam promotes his work with his social media channels Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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