Prior to being selected in the NFL draft, a player must undergo a series of physical and mental evaluations, including the Wonderlic Intelligence Test. The twelve-minute test, which measures “cognitive ability,” has been shown to have a disparate impact on minorities in various employment situations. This Note contends that the NFL’s use of the Wonderlic also has a disparate impact because of its effect on a player’s draft status and ultimately his salary. The test cannot be justified by business necessity because there is no correlation between a player’s Wonderlic score and their on-field performance. As such, this Note calls for the creation of a football-specific intelligence test that would be less likely to have a disparate impact than the Wonderlic, while also being sufficiently job-related and more reliable in predicting a player’s success.
Hatch, Christopher, "Fourth and Short on Equality: The Disparate Impact of the NFL's Use of the Wonderlic Intelligence Test and the Case for a Football-Specific Test Note" (2009). Connecticut Law Review. 38.