‘Head coach, the outcomes have been unacceptable’

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, in a memo to all 32 groups’ chief executives and group presidents, acknowledged that the league has an extended option to go by way of bettering variety.

Roger Goodell points memo on variety

That’s very true with regards to head teaching positions, which incorporates simply three minorities: Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, who’s Black, New York Jets coach Robert Saleh, who’s of Lebanese descent, and Washington Commanders coach Ron Rivera, who’s Hispanic.

Goodell issued this memo Saturday morning within the wake of former Miami Dolphins coach Brian Flores submitting a class-action lawsuit in opposition to the NFL that alleges discrimination within the interview and hiring processes and in his dismissal from the AFC East franchise. Flores has additionally sued the Dolphins, Denver Broncos, and New York Giants.

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“Racism and any type of discrimination is opposite to the NFL’s values,” Goodell wrote. “We have now made important efforts to advertise variety and adopted quite a few insurance policies and applications, which have produced constructive change in lots of areas. Nonetheless, we should acknowledge that notably with respect to go coaches, the outcomes have been unacceptable. We’ll reevaluate and study all insurance policies, pointers, and initiatives referring to variety, fairness, and inclusion, together with as they relate to gender.

“We perceive the considerations expressed by Coach Flores and others this week. Whereas the authorized course of strikes ahead, we is not going to wait to reassess and modify our methods to make sure that they’re per our values and longstanding dedication to variety, fairness, and inclusion.”

Head teaching hiring cycle has included no minorities

No minority head coaches have been employed this offseason. In the meantime, the Houston Texans fired head coach David Culley, who’s Black.

Flores is a candidate for the Texans’ head teaching emptiness, together with Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon and former NFL quarterback Josh McCown.

Steelers proprietor and group president Artwork Rooney II did emphasize that three of the seven normal managers employed throughout this yr’s cycle are minorities, along with two assistant normal managers.

“Whereas I acknowledge that we now have not seen progress within the ranks of Head Coaches, we now have seen marked enchancment within the hiring of girls and minorities in different key management roles akin to Coordinator positions, Basic Supervisor positions, and entrance workplace positions each out and in of soccer operations,” Rooney II mentioned in a press release. “I consider this progress has been made because of the implementation of most of the enhanced insurance policies that have been just lately adopted.”

In addition to Tomlin, each of the Steelers’ inner normal supervisor candidates are minorities. Vice chairman of soccer operations Omar Khan is Hispanic. Professional scouting coordinator Brandon Hunt is Black.

Is the Rooney Rule working?

NFL groups are required to interview two exterior minority candidates for head coach, normal supervisor, and coordinator positions. They have to conduct an in-person interview with a minimum of one exterior minority candidate for head teaching and normal supervisor jobs.

“Over the previous a number of years, our Range Committee has beneficial, and Possession has adopted, various enhancements to the Rooney Rule, in addition to new insurance policies designed to make sure that ladies and minorities are receiving full and honest consideration for teaching and entrance workplace positions,” Rooney II mentioned.

“The Commissioner and League Executives, in addition to the Range Committee, stay dedicated to working with all golf equipment, the Fritz Pollard Alliance, and others in making these efforts as efficient as potential and constructing upon them to advertise the specified impacts on hiring selections within the League in any respect ranges, together with Head Coach positions.”

Brian Flores alleges he’s been the sufferer of discrimination

In the meantime, Flores has made unconfirmed accusations in opposition to the Denver Broncos and the New York Giants of conducting “sham interviews.”

Flores’ lawsuit consists of screen-grabbed textual content messages from New England Patriots coach Invoice Belichick, his former boss, that indicated he understood that the Giants meant to rent Buffalo Payments offensive coordinator Brian Daboll because the substitute for Joe Choose. Flores accused Broncos executives John Elway and Joe Ellis of arriving late and ingesting closely the evening earlier than their assembly in Windfall, R.I.

The Broncos have strongly denied these allegations. So has the NFL, the Giants, and the Dolphins, whose proprietor, Stephen Ross, was accused of incentivizing tanking.

“The allegations from Brian Flores directed towards the Denver Broncos in immediately’s courtroom submitting are blatantly false,” the Broncos mentioned in a press release. “Our interview with Mr. Flores concerning our head teaching place started promptly on the scheduled time of seven:30 a.m. on Jan. 5, 2019, in a Windfall, R.I., resort. There have been 5 Broncos executives current for the interview, which lasted roughly three-and-a-half hours—the totally allotted time—and concluded shortly earlier than 11 a.m.

“Pages of detailed notes, evaluation and evaluations from our interview show the depth of our dialog and honest curiosity in Mr. Flores as a head teaching candidate. Our course of was thorough and honest to find out probably the most certified candidate for our head teaching place. The Broncos will vigorously defend the integrity and values of our group — and its workers — from such baseless and disparaging claims.”

Dolphins, Giants refute Flores’ claims

The Dolphins, in a press release, denied Flores’ accusations.

“The implication that we acted in a way inconsistent with the integrity of the sport is inaccurate,” the group mentioned.

And the Giants mentioned: “We interviewed a powerful and numerous group of candidates. The very fact of the matter is, Brian Flores was within the dialog to be our head coach till the eleventh hour. Finally, we employed the person we felt was most certified to be our subsequent head coach.”

Flores’ response to Goodell’s memo

In response to Goodell’s memo, Flores’ authorized group issued the next assertion criticizing the NFL’s response as a “public relations ploy”:

“Sadly, instantly after Coach Flores filed the class-action lawsuit, the NFL and numerous groups reflexively, and with none investigation, denied the detailed allegations set forth within the 60-page criticism. Consequently, once we spoke to the nationwide media the next day, we made clear that the NFL ought to view this class-action lawsuit as a possibility to have interaction in actual change and confront the plain actuality.

The assertion made immediately by the Commissioner is, on the floor, a constructive first step, however we suspect that that is extra of a public relations ploy than an actual dedication to vary. For too a few years, the NFL has hidden behind the quilt of foundations that have been supposed to guard the rights of Black gamers and coaches, all whereas letting systemic racial bias fester in its entrance places of work. The NFL is now rolling out the identical playbook but once more, and that’s exactly why the lawsuit was filed.

We’d be happy to speak to the Commissioner about actual change, however sadly, he has not reached out to us to have interaction in such a dialogue. In reality, no person from the NFL has reached out to us. Absent such a dialogue adopted by unbiased and concrete change, we consider {that a} courtroom or governmental company should order a federal monitor to supervise the NFL because the NFL can’t proceed to police itself.”


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