February 01, 2022

Accidental Bill Belichick Text Messages At Center Of Brian Flores Racial Discrimination Lawsuit Against NFL, Giants: Bill Belichick texted the wrong Brian to congratulate him for getting the Giants’ head coaching a job, according to a lawsuit filed by former Dolphins head coach and former Patriots assistant coach Brian Flores. As a result, Brian Flores has filed suit against the NFL and its franchises and it's a helluva read (PDF).

posted by NoMich to football at 05:19 PM - 11 comments

Holy shit, Flores is just gonna try to burn the whole fucking facade down.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 07:03 PM on February 01, 2022

And I got no problem with that if he succeeds

posted by NoMich at 08:08 PM on February 01, 2022

The timeline of events based on the texts is pretty damning, plus the sloppy and lack of professionalism by the Denver interviewing team... Yikes.

I hope Flores does not settle before discovery (or settles at all!) and this leads to more discoveries on the hidden side of NFL franchises.

posted by FLsportsman at 10:51 PM on February 01, 2022

The Miami Dolphins owner offering Flores 100k per loss in order to improve the team's draft position. One owner attempting to influence and throw the games.

Combined with the NFL embracing sports gambling.

It would be extra interesting if the Miami district opens a criminal investigation over these allegations.

posted by FLsportsman at 10:57 PM on February 01, 2022

It'll be interesting to see where the league places Stephen Ross in relation to Dan Snyder on the banishment scale. If they didn't ban Snyder, what would / will it take for them to ban someone else?

The Belichick texts are a distant equivalent of the Ray Rice elevator video and the league office has pushed all its chips in with the owners and their front offices. Stakes are high with lots of info yet to come to light. Flores has every reason to seek to carry this through to judgment. It's hard to imagine him reaching a settlement agreement that allows the defendants to admit no wrongdoing. This case is going to damage the league regardless of the outcome.

Assuming that Flores won't have another opportunity to coach in the pros, he'd surely have suitors in the college game if he's so inclined. And a ton of kids wanting to play for him.

posted by beaverboard at 12:25 AM on February 02, 2022

Flores is exactly the type of person you would want leading a team. Sounds like he's got a bulletproof case but the courts most often lean right on these issues. Rules for thee and not me or "proper societal order" per the previous federal government. Having the court grant his request for a jury trial would appear to be the only hurdle.

Sadly Flores probably never coaches in the NFL again while guys like Matt Patricia and Joe Judge continue to fail upwards.

posted by cixelsyd at 11:12 AM on February 02, 2022

I doubt that the lawsuit has any realistic chance of succeeding, but the discovery phase is going to be the greatest soap opera we've ever seen.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 11:16 AM on February 02, 2022

Bill Belichick's problems with technology have been documented, so I'm not surprised at the mistake; the resultant furor will not serve him well. It would not surprise me to hear of the NFL exerting some pressure upon the Kraft family to hasten his retirement. Nonetheless, this is probably what the NFL needs to clean up its act.

Tahoemoj probably can give us a more informed opinion on the merits of Flores's case, but to this uninformed layman it is fairly solid regarding the discriminatory hiring practices. The Rooney Rule is nothing but window dressing, attempting to cover a very messy house. The allegations against the Denver interviewing group are a "he said, she said" sort of thing, and will be hard to prove without some corroboration. The same holds true for the alleged offer of payments for losing games. Without some witnesses, a paper trail, or video it's Ross's word against Flores's.

What is really interesting is the story about recruiting a noted quarterback. According to Joe Schad of the Palm Beach Post, that quarterback was Tom Brady. At the time, 2019, Brady was still under contract to New England Patriots. Flores was the former Defensive Coordinator of the Patriots, thus he would have had a somewhat close relationship with Brady. When Flores found out about whom he was supposed to meet, he immediately backed out. Stephen Ross should thank him for that. You can bet that Patriots would have screamed tampering, it would have been easy to prove, and Miami would have paid a heavy price. Instead, Ross chose to denigrate Flores, and by doing so lost a pretty good coach. All it will take to prove the attempted tampering, if true,, is for Brady to tell his side of the story.

Does anyone care to start a prop bet on how much discussion on NFL programming (major national networks and the NFL Network) about the lawsuit takes place during the days leading to and including the Super Bowl? I will take the under.

posted by Howard_T at 01:33 PM on February 02, 2022

If the league office was devious, they would encourage the Texans or Saints to hire Flores either as a HC or DC.

Then the league could form a stage act "blue ribbon committee" to "study the problem" and report to the Commissioner. It would look like progress was being made, but the committee members would really just be circling their lunch menu choices and taking long walks in the country.

Problem solved. Lawsuit withdrawn. League redeemed.

Interestingly, I just saw that a Texans fan blog polled its followers with this question:

In light of all that's gone on, would you welcome the hiring of Brian Flores as the Texans' new head coach?

84% said Yes. I was astounded. Hell, maybe he's got a chance to work again.

Meanwhile, where is the NFLPA in all of this? Mostly silent and invisible from what I can tell.

posted by beaverboard at 04:38 PM on February 02, 2022

I like this plan better:
- Harbaugh moves to the NFL
- Matt Rhule moves to Ann Arbor
- Brian Flores moves to Rock Hill/Charlotte

posted by NoMich at 05:39 PM on February 02, 2022

If the league office was devious, they would encourage the Texans or Saints to hire Flores either as a HC or DC.

That is a pretty sad reality.

Flores is the best candidate for those positions anyways as he was for the Giants position. He might have some competition from Jim Caldwell who had a winning record and 2 playoff appearances with one of the most brutal sports franchises ever (sorry Lions fans and all of the great players who have had to play there). But both of these guys share a common "trait" that NFL owners prefer to suppress.

The guy took over a brutal Dolphins team and made it competitive. Ownership obviously made a bad decision hiring him if they were interested in tanking. They should have hired Patricia, Judge, or a bunch of others that currently are employed as head coaches in the NFL.

posted by cixelsyd at 07:38 PM on February 02, 2022

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