Two more NFL coaches join Brian Flores’ racial discrimination lawsuit | NFL


Two more coaches have joined Brian Flores’s lawsuit against the NFL, which alleges the league “is racially segregated and is managed much like a plantation”. The updated lawsuit adds coaches Steve Wilks and Ray Horton.

Wilks alleges he was discriminated against by the Arizona Cardinals in 2018 and Horton claims he was subjected to discriminatory treatment when he interviewed for the Tennessee Titans head coach position in January 2016. The rewritten lawsuit from Flores also criticized the NFL for its response to the lawsuit he brought against it and its teams several weeks ago.

A release from the lawsuit’s attorneys, says that “Mr Wilks was hired as a ‘bridge coach’ and was not given any meaningful chance to succeed. He was unfairly and discriminatorily fired after just one season. His white GM, who made poor personnel decisions and was convicted for a DUI during the offseason, was given a contract extension. Mr Wilks was replaced by a white coach, Kliff Kingsbury, who had no prior NFL coaching experience and was coming off of multiple losing seasons as a Head Coach at Texas Tech.

“Mr Kingsbury, armed with quarterback Kyler Murray, has been given a much longer leash than Mr Wilks and, to his credit, has succeeded. That said, Mr Wilks, given the same opportunity afforded to Mr Kingsbury, surely would have succeeded as well.”

Wilks, who was head coach of the Cardinals in 2018, said he hoped the lawsuit would help bring racial equality to the league.

“When Coach Flores filed this action, I knew I owed it to myself, and to all Black NFL coaches and aspiring coaches, to stand with him,” he said. “This lawsuit has shed further important light on a problem that we all know exists, but that too few are willing to confront. Black coaches and candidates should have exactly the same ability to become employed, and remain employed, as white coaches and candidates.”

Horton said he was “devastated and humiliated” when he learned that his interview with the Titans was a sham.

“By joining this case, I am hoping to turn that experience into a positive and make lasting change and create true equal opportunity in the future,” he said.

Messages sent to the NFL, the Arizona Cardinals and the Tennessee Titans for comment were not immediately returned.

Flores sued the NFL and three teams on 1 February after he was fired as the Miami Dolphins coach in January after leading the Dolphins to a 24-25 record over three years. They went 9-8 in their second straight winning season, but failed to make the playoffs during his tenure. He has since been hired as an assistant coach by the Pittsburgh Steelers.


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