Steve Wilks firing ‘hurt a little bit’ amid lack of black hires


TAMPA, Fla. — Tampa Bay Buccaneers new assistant head coach and run-game coordinator Harold Goodwin didn’t mince words Friday when asked about his disappointment over the firing of Steve Wilks by the Arizona Cardinals after one season and over the lack of minority hires around the NFL.

“That hurt a little bit,” said Goodwin, who is African-American. “He’s a friend of mine. We worked together back in the day with the Bears. It’s hard to build something from the ground up with one year. It’s like, ‘Hey, I want you to start this Fortune 500 company, but you’ve got one year.’ That’s impossible. And that’s what he was tasked with. But God will look after him. He’ll be OK in the long run and hopefully he’ll get another opportunity.”

This offseason was particularly difficult for minority coaches. Five of the eight coaches fired either during or after the 2018 season — Wilks, Hue Jackson of the Cleveland Browns, Todd Bowles of the New York Jets, Marvin Lewis of the Cincinnati Bengals and Vance Joseph of the Denver Broncos — are black. That has left just Anthony Lynn of the Los Angeles Chargers and Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers as the only black head coaches in the NFL.

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