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The number of black head coaches in the NFL is once again on the rise

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Since the end of the NFL regular season, the Denver Broncos hired Vance Joseph and the Los Angeles Chargers hired Anthony Lynn to be their respective head coaches. Those two coaches are the latest additions to a growing number of minority coaches in the NFL.

In 2003, the NFL instituted the "Rooney Rule," requiring NFL teams to interview minority candidates for vacant head coaching positions. At the time, there was one minority head coach. Over the next eight years, that number grew, peaking in 2011 at eight. However, in recent years the number had been dropping again and there was a growing concern that the pipeline was drying up with the retirement of Tony Dungy (who had previously mentored a number of young minority coaches) and with so few minority coordinators in the NFL, especially on the offensive side of the ball.

But after dropping to just four minority coaches in 2013, the number is again rising, and is now once again back up to eight, including seven African-American coaches (continued below).

1Cork Gaines/Business Insider

The biggest reason for the growing number of minority coaches appears to be patience. Teams have shown an unprecedented level of patience with minority head coaches over the last 14 years.

13 PHOTOS
Minority head coaches in the NFL since 2002
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Minority head coaches in the NFL since 2002

Marvin Lewis of the Cincinnati Bengals, 2003-present

(Photo by: Nick Cammett/Diamond Images/Getty Images)

Lovie Smith of the Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2004-2012 and 2014-2015

(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

Romeo Crennel of the Cleveland Browns and Kansas City Chiefs, 2005-2008 and 2011-2012

(David Eulitt/Kansas City Star/MCT via Getty Images)

Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers, 2007-present

(Photo by Shelley Lipton/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Mike Singletary of the San Francisco 49ers, 2008-2010

(Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Jim Caldwell of the Indianapolis Colts and Detroit Lions, 2009-2011 and 2014-present

(Photo by Scott Grau/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Raheem Morris of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 2009-2011

(Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

Leslie Frazier of the Minnesota Vikings, 2010-2013

(Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)

Ron Rivera of the Carolina Panthers, 2011-present

(Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)

Todd Bowles of the New York Jets, 2015-present

Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Hue Jackson of the Cleveland Browns, 2016-present

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Vance Joseph of the Denver Broncos, beginning 2017

(Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

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Not including Jospeh and Lynn, of the 11 minority coaches hired since the start of the Rooney Rule, six are still head coaches in the NFL now. That list includes Marvin Lewis who was hired prior to the 2003 season, Mike Tomlin (2007), and Ron Rivera (2011).

16 PHOTOS
Best photos from NFL Wild Card Weekend
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Best photos from NFL Wild Card Weekend
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 07: Wide receiver Paul Richardson #10 of the Seattle Seahawks brings in a one-handed catch for a touchdown against the Detroit Lions in the NFC Wild Card game at CenturyLink Field on January 7, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - JANUARY 07: Andre Holmes #18 of the Oakland Raiders makes a reception against the Houston Texans in the AFC Wild Card game at NRG Stadium on January 7, 2017 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - JANUARY 08: Antonio Brown #84 of the Pittsburgh Steelers runs down field for a touchdown after catching a pass from Ben Roethlisberger #7 during the first quarter against the Miami Dolphins in the AFC Wild Card game at Heinz Field on January 8, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 8: Micah Hyde #33 of the Green Bay Packers breaks up a pass intended for Sterling Shepard #87 of the New York Giants in the first quarter during the NFC Wild Card game at Lambeau Field on January 8, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Miami Dolphins quarterback Matt Moore collides with Jay Ajayi in the third quarter as they play the Pittsburgh Steelers in the NFL Wild Card Playoffs on Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017 at Heinz Stadium in Pittsburgh, Pa. (Charles Trainor Jr./Miami Herald/TNS via Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 08: Julius Peppers #56 of the Green Bay Packers sacks Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants in the second quarter during the NFC Wild Card game at Lambeau Field on January 8, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jan 7, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans strong safety Corey Moore (43) knocks the ball out of the hands of Oakland Raiders wide receiver Johnny Holton (16) during the fourth quarter of the AFC Wild Card playoff football game at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 8, 2017; Green Bay, WI, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) is tackled by Green Bay Packers cornerback Damarious Randall (23) during the first half in the NFC Wild Card playoff football game at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 8, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Miami Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills (10) catches a pass in front of Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Gay (22) during the first half in the AFC Wild Card playoff football game at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: James Lang-USA TODAY Sports
GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 08: Randall Cobb #18 of the Green Bay Packers scores a touchdown in the third quarter during the NFC Wild Card game against the New York Giants at Lambeau Field on January 8, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
SEATTLE, WA - JANUARY 07: Paul Richardson #10 of the Seattle Seahawks makes a one-handed reception against Nevin Lawson #24 of the Detroit Lions during the second half of the NFC Wild Card game at CenturyLink Field on January 7, 2017 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 8: Clay Matthews #52 of the Green Bay Packers walks off the field after beating the New York Giants 38-13 in the NFC Wild Card game at Lambeau Field on January 8, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - JANUARY 08: Matt Moore #8 of the Miami Dolphins receives attention on the sideline after taking a hit during the second quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Wild Card game at Heinz Field on January 8, 2017 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 8: Eli Apple #24 of the New York Giants tackles Davante Adams #17 of the Green Bay Packers in the fourth quarter during the NFC Wild Card game at Lambeau Field on January 8, 2017 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - JANUARY 07: Houston Texans Quarterback Brock Osweiler (17) throws downfield from his own endzone during the NFL AFC Wild Card game between the Oakland Raiders and Houston Texans on January 7, 2017, at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Ken Murray/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
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