NFL News & Notes
Flores Lawsuit + Washington's New Team Name
What a crazy week it has been in the NFL! Here's all the news and notes:
The week started with Tom Brady retiring. Then, former Miami HC Brian Flores filed a lawsuit against the NFL and three teams for racial discrimination in the hiring process among Black coaches. This has been an ongoing discussion, and there is still more to report on the matter at hand. In the middle of all that, the Washington Football Team decided now was the right time to announce the name change to the Washington Commanders. So, with all the chaos happening in the NFL right now, let's break it down!
The more important news is former Miami Dolphins HC Brian Flores filing a lawsuit against the NFL and three teams (New York Giants, Denver Broncos, and Miami) for racial discrimination amongst Black head coaches. He was fired by the Dolphins a month ago after back-to-back winning seasons. The firing shocked many people; Dolphins' owner Stephen Ross cited Flores' inability to interact with personnel. However, Flores stated in the lawsuit that Ross had offered him 100K to lose on purpose in 2019 and was "mad" when the team started to win games late in the season. All because Ross wanted a better draft pick.
When you hire a coach, you expect that coach to want to win games. If this allegation is true, Stephen Ross should step down as the Dolphins' owner; this is inexcusable. This is part of why MLB is in a lockout; players are discouraged by how owners treat the sport. When owners feel like they can't win, they decide the only thing they do is lose on purpose to gain a better draft pick. The only way the NFL can get better is if the owners can learn from their unfortunate mistakes.
In addition to the Dolphins, the lawsuit included the Giants and the Broncos. Flores interviewed for the Giants' HC job, but they gave that to former Bills' OC Brian Daboll. However, according to a text exchange between Flores and Patriots' HC Bill Belichick, the Giants had already decided about Daboll four days before Flores' scheduled interview with the team.
In the lawsuit, Flores claims that the interview with Giants was a "sham," and the only reason the Giants met with Flores was to comply with the Rooney Rule. The NFL put the Rooney Rule in place in 2003, which makes it mandatory for owners to interview an additional candidate for a coaching position. The Rooney Rule made it so that there would hopefully be more black coaches in the NFL.
Unfortunately, there is only one black coach in the NFL, which is Steelers' HC Mike Tomlin. The Broncos are involved in the lawsuit because, according to Flores, during a coaching interview in 2019, several front-office executives, including then-GM John Elway, showed up and hungover. They, too, only interviewed Flores to comply with the Rooney Rule.
In my opinion, this isn't an NFL problem, meaning Roger Goddell has nothing to do with this for once in his life. This issue lies solely with each wealthy and white owner who constantly overlooks qualified coaches due to their ethnicity. What Flores is doing may be risky, but I think he feels that he's doing the right thing.
"We need change," Flores said on Get Up, Wednesday morning. "We need to change the hearts and minds of the people making those decisions." Flores is still a finalist for a head coaching job with the New Orleans Saints and the Houston Texans.
It will be interesting to see what happens in the next couple of weeks with the lawsuit and whether or not he finds a job. Regardless, Flores knows what he is doing and understands what's at stake. His primary focus is trying to end racial discrimination in the NFL. I'm not sure if he will get his point across unless we start to see more black coaches, but more importantly, we need to see more Black owners.
As of right now, the Denver Broncos is free-game, meaning the team is on sale. Also, I don't see Stephen Ross sticking around in Miami if, and only if, these tanking claims are valid. If that is the case, these changes need to happen now!
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Jake Klausner covers all things sports for ThePyrrhic.com. Keep your eyes peeled for NFL Analysis, World Series Recaps, and more from Jake.
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