Feb 2, 2022 - Sports

Brian Flores says NFL lawsuit is "bigger than football"

Head Coach Brian Flores of the Miami Dolphins in action against the New England Patriots during the first half at Hard Rock Stadium on January 09, 2022 in Miami Gardens, Florida.

Miami Dolphins' Brian Flores coaches against the New England Patriots during the first half of a Jan. 9 game at Miami Gardens, Fla. Photo: Mark Brown/Getty Images

Brian Flores, who was fired last month as head coach of the Miami Dolphins, said Wednesday that the lawsuit filed against the National Football League and each of its franchises for racial discrimination "is bigger than football."

Driving the news: "It’s hard to speak out. You’re making some sacrifices. But this is again, this is bigger than football. This is bigger than coaching," Flores said in an interview with "CBS Morning" on Wednesday.

  • "I absolutely want to coach in this league. But I’m not the only story here ... There are people who have come before me," Flores said.

Catch up quick: Flores in the lawsuit claims that he was informed by New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick that the New York Giants head coaching job had gone to someone else, three days before Flores was set to interview for the position. 

  • Flores alleges that he was only interviewed for that job because of the Rooney Rule, an NFL policy requiring teams to interview minority candidates for head coaching jobs.
  • "I’ve worked so hard to get to where I am in football to become a head coach. Put 18 years in this league. To go on what felt like was a sham interview, I was hurt," Flores said Wednesday.

The NFL and Dolphins both denied the allegations of racial discrimination, with the former saying Flores' claims were "without merit."

  • “We vehemently deny any allegations of racial discrimination and are proud of the diversity and inclusion throughout our organization. The implication that we acted in a manner inconsistent with the integrity of the game is incorrect," the Dolphins said in a statement.
  • “The NFL and our clubs are deeply committed to ensuring equitable employment practices and continue to make progress in providing equitable opportunities throughout our organizations. Diversity is core to everything we do, and there are few issues on which our clubs and our internal leadership team spend more time," the league said.

Go deeper: NFL sued for racial discrimination by former Dolphins coach Brian Flores

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