Days after the NFL released a statement claiming Brian Flores’ allegations were “without merit,” commissioner Roger Goodell sent a memo to all 32 teams.
Flores, the former Miami Dolphins head coach, filed a lawsuit against the NFL for racial discrimination.
Goodell’s memo, which was titled “Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion,” said the NFL has made “significant efforts to promote diversity,” but the results when it comes to hiring Black head coaches “have been unacceptable.”
“Racism and any form of discrimination is contrary to the NFL’s values,” Goodell said in the statement obtained by ESPN’s Adam Schefter. “We have made significant efforts to promote diversity and adopted numerous policies and programs which have produced positive change in many areas, however we must acknowledge that particularly with respect to head coaches the results have been unacceptable. We will reevaluate and examine all policies, guidelines and initiatives relating to diversity, equity and inclusions.”
Goodell also mentioned they understand Flores’ concerns.
Flores is alleging racial discrimination against the Denver Broncos and New York Giants during their hiring process. The former head coach even presented screenshots of text messages with New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick congratulating who he thought was Brian Daboll on getting the Giants head coaching job days before Flores even interviewed.
Doug Wigdor and John Elefterakis, the lawyers for Flores, released their own statement shortly after Goodell’s.
“For too many years, the NFL has hid behind the cover of foundations that were supposed to protect the rights of Black players and coaches, all while letting systemic racial bias fester in its front offices. The NFL is now rolling out the same playbook yet again and that is precisely why this lawsuit was filed. We would be happy to talk to the Commissioner about real change, but unfortunately he has not reached out to us to engage in such a discussion. In fact, nobody from the NFL has reached out to us. …”
Read the whole statement below, courtesy of NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo:
Now we’ll see what kind of action, if any, Goodell takes.