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'A Massive, Massive Issue For The NFL, The Miami Dolphins': Brian Flores Explosive Claims In Class Action Lawsuit

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - Brian Flores' class action lawsuit claiming discrimination and racist hiring practices in the NFL calls out Dolphins owner Stephen Ross along with the Denver Broncos and New York Giants.

In his 58 page lawsuit, Flores made an explosive claim that during the 2019 season, Ross offered to pay him $100,000 for every loss so the team could have a better draft pick. Flores said he refused to agree to that.

A year later, the lawsuit claims, Ross tried ambushing Flores into meeting the "prominent quarterback," but Flores left before such a gathering took place.

"From that point forward, Mr. Flores was ostracized and ultimately he was fired. He was subsequently defamed throughout the media and the League as he was labeled by the Dolphins brass as someone who was difficult to work with," according to the lawsuit.

Click Here To Read The Full Class Action Lawsuit

"He wasn't even given a chance to succeed and it resulted in him being terminated," said Flores' attorney David Gottlieb.

He said Flores' recent claim of discrimination in the NFL is nothing new, he was just the first to do something about it.

"We think his determination is part of the systemic discrimination that goes on in the NFL. You see white coaches sticking around after having losing records," said Gottlieb.

Gottlieb contends Flores engaged in two sham interviews, with the Giants and Broncos, to fulfill the Rooney Rule.

The Rooney Rule requires league teams to interview ethnic-minority candidates for head coaching and senior football operation jobs.

CBS Sports senior NFL reporter Johnathon Jones said Flores' claims about the fraudulent interviews are nothing new.

"I think there have been a number of coaches who've come out on the record and substantiated their own claims similar to Brian Flores. I heard from Marvin Lewis about a sham interview he did back in 2002 with Carolina Panthers, Hugh Jackson of the Browns," he said.

Jones said Flores' claim about Ross offering him $100,000 to tank could become a huge problem.

"Brian Flores says he has evidence of it. There are reports that he has witnesses who can corroborate that. If that actually took place, that is a massive, massive issue for the NFL, the Miami Dolphins, and Steven Ross," he said.

Flores said he believes when he refused to lose the games for a better draft pick he was labeled difficult, abrasive, and made to look like "an angry black man," according to the lawsuit.

Jone said Flores is known for not being a warm and fuzzy type of coach.

"One person told me when it comes to Brian Flores, do you want to win or do you want a hug. So there's no mistaking he's the kind of guy, when you're screwing up, he's going to get on you and if you do something great, he may not give you a pat on the back," he said.

In its defense, the Dolphins have pointed to their diversity matrix to deny discrimination, identifying 11 minorities in football operations including the front office.

That's doesn't fly for Flores' legal team.

"The defense that because we have some Black people in positions proves we don't discriminate. That's really insufficient," said Gottlieb.

There have been just 20 different Black head coaches all time in the NFL. Jones says only five or six have ever gotten a second chance to be a head coach again

In the statement released late Wednesday night, Ross denies the allegations.

"With regards to the allegations being made by Brian Flores, I am a man of honor and integrity and cannot let them stand without responding. I take great personal exception to these malicious attacks and the truth must be known. His allegations are false, malicious and defamatory. We understand there are media reports stating that the NFL intends to investigate his claims, and we will cooperate fully. I welcome that Investigation and I am eager to defend my personal integrity and the integrity and values of the entire Miami Dolphins Organization, from the baseless, unfair and disparaging claims."

In an interview Wednesday with CBS Mornings, Flores was asked if he felt the lawsuit would hurt his career. He said it was the right thing to do, adding he's speaking up for decades of this type of behavior going on.

WATCH: Brian Flores Interview On CBS Mornings

 

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