Former Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores appeared on CNN to speak out about his race lawsuit with the NFL. Flores, who was fired by Dolphins owner Stephen Ross, is suing the league for alleged racial discrimination along with his former team Miami, the Denver Broncos and the New York Giants.
He stated that he loves coaching football and that he would still like to coach in the NFL but he believes these ongoing issues are bigger than him and his personal journey. He said:
"This is bigger than coaching, this is bigger than me. The numbers speak for themselves as far as the hiring, firing and the lack of opportunities for minority and black head coaches and executives in the National Football League. We need to change, we need things to change."
The actions taken by Flores in suing the NFL and three teams could cost him his future and his aspirations of being a head coach in the NFL again. When asked why he was doing this, he responded:
"This isn't about me and I understand that. This is bigger than me, this is bigger than football. Many have come before and done a lot to create change in this country, for people of color, and I just felt like, in this instance, it was my turn to step up and be an agent for change and I'm proud to do that."
Flores expands on his motivations for taking this stance and says it was his children that made him go through with this. He says he doesn't want them to go through the things he has had to go through and also believes his former staff members are more than capable of head coaching roles in the league but aren't getting fair opportunities.
What has happened for Brian Flores to take this action against the NFL?
He is suing the NFL for alleged racial discrimination, including his former employers the Miami Dolphins, the Denver Broncos and the New York Giants.
He included texts from New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick as evidence from when he was interviewing with the Giants as part of the NFL's Rooney Rule. This mandates that every team must interview a minority candidate for head coach, general manager and top assistant coach positions when looking to fill a vacancy.
He also stated in his lawsuit that the NFL is managed like a 'plantation' and that the 32 owners, none of whom are black, profit from the labor of its players, 70 percent of whom are African American.
Furthermore, he claims that Dolphins owner Ross offered him $100,000 for each loss in his first season as head coach so that the franchise would obtain the No.1 draft pick.
He was also allegedly pressured into recruiting a 'prominent' unidentified quarterback, an action that would have violated the NFL's tampering rules. He believes he was fired as a result of saying no to both requests.
The NFL released a statement in response to Flores' claims stating they are 'without merit'.
It remains to be seen whether Flores will ever coach in the NFL again as he fights for equal and fair opportunities for himself and other black and minority coaches.