National Football League Files To Move Former Head Coach Brian Flores’ Lawsuit To Arbitration

Syndication: USA TODAY

The NFL filed a request in federal court on Tuesday to compel arbitration in Brian Flores’ class-action complaint against the league and numerous clubs, in which he and two other coaches allege racial discrimination in the league’s hiring policies.

Late Tuesday, the league and the franchises submitted documents with the court presiding over the lawsuit filed by Brian Flores after he was sacked as head coach of the Miami Dolphins in January.

The NFL stated that Flores’ and other coaches’ employment contracts with teams include terms requiring all issues to be resolved through arbitration.

Flores’ legal counsel stated in an April statement, when the NFL initially stated its plan to submit a move to compel arbitration, that doing so would undermine much-needed clarity in the case.

In March, Flores released a statement against the idea of arbitration, saying, “The claims that we filed involve important issues of systemic race discrimination and the integrity of NFL football games. Unfortunately, the Dolphins and their attorneys, Quinn Emanuel and Paul Weiss, are trying to push the claims against the Dolphins into secret arbitration proceedings that lack transparency.”

Former Raiders coach Jon Gruden also suspected the NFL of moving his lawsuit to arbitration. Back in March, LOJ founder Amy Dash said, “Dolphins could have a stronger chance of forcing this one to arbitration if in fact there is a clause in the employment contract between the coach and the club that addresses resolving these types of disputes in an arbitration, which is different from Gruden’s lawsuit.”

Flores accused Dolphins owner Stephen Ross of offering to bribe him to fix games. He claimed Ross offered him $100,000 per loss to intentionally fix Dolphins games so the team would tank and be able to secure a first overall draft pick.

Flores also claims Ross pressured him to violate the league’s tampering rules and when he refused, Ross “set him up” by placing him on a yacht with a high-profile prospective quarterback to force the meeting.

Flores claimed once he refused, he was labeled as an “angry black man” and difficult to work with. Flores also claimed that a main point of his firing was that he was viewed as not communicative or collaborative enough.