Ex-Dolphins Coach Brian Flores Sues NFL, Several Teams for Alleged Racist Hiring Practices (UPDATE)

Former Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores is suing the NFL alleging racism, after he was a candidate for the head coaching position in New York.

brian flores sues nfl racism

Image via Getty/Michael Reaves

brian flores sues nfl racism

UPDATED 2/3, 6:35 p.m. ET: The New York Giants released a statement denying the allegations brought forth in the lawsuit filed by Brian Flores.

“Brian Flores has raised serious issues in the filing of his complaint,” the team said in the statement. “The specific claims against the Giants and Mr. Flores’ allegations about the legitimacy of his candidacy for our head coach position are disturbing and simply false.”

The #Giants just released a lengthy and detailed statement regarding the Brian Flores’ allegations. pic.twitter.com/dPB8G7WY6X

— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) February 3, 2022

Dolphins owner Stephen Ross also responded to Flores’ allegations, writing, “I take great personal exception to these malicious attacks, and the truth must be known. His allegations are false, malicious and defamatory.”

Ross continued, “We understand there are media reports stating that the NFL intends to investigate his claims, and we will cooperate fully. I welcome that investigation and I am eager to defend my personal integrity, and the integrity and values of the entire Miami Dolphins organization, from these baseless, unfair and disparaging claims.”

See original story below.

Former Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores is suing the NFL, the New York Giants, the Denver Broncos, and the Dolphins for “racism in hiring,” ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports.

Former Miami HC Brian Flores is suing the NFL, the Giants, the Dolphins and the Broncos for alleged “racism in hiring”, and he includes texts from Patriots’ HC Bill Belichick in the suit as evidence. Lawsuit filed in Manhattan Federal Court seeking unspecified damages from NFL.

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 1, 2022

There are a number of troubling accusations in the 58-page lawsuit, including one in which Flores alleges that Dolphins owner Steven Ross said he’d pay Flores $100,000 for every Dolphins loss in the 2019 season. When Flores ended up winning games late in the season, he was informed that Ross was not pleased with him for essentially worsening the team’s draft position.

Brian Flores lawsuit says that Steven Ross said he’d pay Flores 100K for every Dolphins loss in 2019 season to tank. Also provides text message evidence from Bill Belichick that Giants already decided to hire Brian Daboll when he came in for what he calls a “sham interview.” https://t.co/ft1qQ8T2NO pic.twitter.com/bfRbF5ms5U

— Cameron Wolfe (@CameronWolfe) February 1, 2022

Flores also alleges that when he interviewed with the Broncos in 2019, team executives John Elway and Joe Ellis showed up “disheveled,” as it was “obvious they had been drinking the night before.” The Broncos would go on to hire Vic Fangio. 

Brian Flores also adds that he interviewed with the Broncos in 2019, but GM John Elway and President Joe Ellis showed up an hour late. “They looked completely disheveled, and it was obvious that they had been drinking heavily the night before.”

They eventually hired Vic Fangio. pic.twitter.com/r5fHmvTBs7

— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) February 1, 2022

Most recently, Flores was up for the Giants head coaching job, but ultimately believes they brought him in to comply with the league’s Rooney Rule, which requires teams to interview minority candidates throughout the hiring process. The suit even includes text messages to Flores from Bill Belichick, in which the Pats coach accidentally congratulated Flores for landing the job, thinking that he was texting Brian Daboll, who actually got the job. 

“Sorry – I fucked this up,” Belichick wrote when he realized his mistake. “I double checked and misread the text. I think they are naming Brian Daboll. I’m sorry about that.”

“God has gifted me with a special talent to coach the game of football, but the need for change is bigger than my personal goals,” Flores said in a statement about the lawsuit. “In making the decision to file the class action complaint today, I understand that I may be risking coaching the game that I love and that has done so much for my family and me. My sincere hope is that by standing up against systemic racism in the NFL, others will join me to ensure that positive change is made for generations to come.”

Flores’ lawyers, Douglas H. Wigdor and John Elefterakis, also released a statement in which they called it a “privilege” to represent the former NFL coach.

Mr. Flores is represented by @WigdorLaw and @Eepnyc.

Below is a joint statement from Douglas H. Wigdor and John Elefterakis.#BrianFlores #BHM pic.twitter.com/X47vpzZokE

— WigdorLaw (@WigdorLaw) February 1, 2022

The NFL released its own statement in response to Flores’ lawsuit. 

NFL statement on Brian Flores’ lawsuit: pic.twitter.com/6hLJXTLmsO

— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) February 1, 2022

The league said it’s committed to “equitable employment practices” and called Flores’ suit “without merit.”

The Broncos also responded to the lawsuit via an official statement. 

Broncos’ statement today on Brian Flores’ lawsuit: pic.twitter.com/IFVBNhQLgq

— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) February 1, 2022

Flores was fired by the Dolphins after this past season, despite his team posting back-to-back winning records. The amount in damages he’s seeking has not been specified.

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