White Head Coaches Prefer White Quarterbacks, Black Head Coaches Prefer Black Quarterbacks

Donovan McNabb and Joe Webb

With the lack of job security for head coaches in the NFL, one would think that these men would want their teams being led by the best quarterbacks, regardless of skin colour.

However, a look through NFL rosters reveals a troubling trend: white head coaches are more likely to have white quarterbacks, and black head coaches are more likely to have black quarterbacks.

In the NFL, 21.9 per cent (7 of 32) of the head coaches are black. According to NFL.com, those seven coaches have 20 quarterbacks on their active rosters. Half (10) of those quarterbacks are black or mixed-race.

On the other hand, 25 (78.1%) of the head coaches are white. Of the 66 quarterbacks on those teams, 56 (84.8%) are white, and only 10 (15.2%) are black or mixed-race.


Are black coaches biased towards black quarterbacks? Are white coaches biased towards white quarterbacks? Maybe there is a little bit of both.

No matter what the reason, the numbers are clear. If you are a white quarterback, you are much more likely to be playing for a white head coach (84.8%) than a black head coach (15.2%). And if you are a black or mixed-race QB, you are much more likely to find work with a black head coach (50%) even though only 21.9 per cent of head coaches are black.

Here is the full breakdown

Race and NFL Quarterbacks

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