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Former Dolphins coach Brian Flores said he believes “back channel conversations” and Bill Belichick’s “influence”...

Former Dolphins coach Brian Flores said he believes “back channel conversations” and Bill Belichick’s “influence” led to him not getting the Giants’ head coaching job.
On Tuesday, Flores filed a 58-page class-action lawsuit in Manhattan against the NFL and the Giants, among other teams, alleging discrimination in the hiring process.
In a Thursday interview on NPR’s “The Limits with Jay Williams” podcast, Flores claimed the Patriots coach and the Giants are “examples” of corrupt hiring.
“I think there are back channel conversations and back channel meetings that are had that oftentimes influence decisions. I think [the Giants hiring process] is a clear example of that. Bill Belichick is a clear example of that. His resume speaks to that,” Flores said.
In the lawsuit, Flores claims the Giants had made their decision to hire Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll to replace the fired coach Joe Judge — before they even met with Flores.

Flores shared text messages in the lawsuit between him and Belichick as evidence that New York was set on Daboll before meeting with Flores.
The alleged messages show a text from Belichick congratulating Flores on getting the Giants’ job, and another message from Belichick “realizing” he texted the wrong Brian.
“It was clear to me that decision was made with [Belichick’s] influence,” Flores said on the podcast. “That’s part of the problem. That needs to change. There needs to be a fair and equal opportunity to interview and showcase your abilities to lead and earn one of those positions.”
According to the NFL’s Rooney Rule, which was established in 2003 to increase the number of minorities hired, clubs must interview at least two diverse candidates from the Career Developmental Advisory Panel List. Teams then must conduct an in-person interview with at least one external minority candidate for any GM or head coaching interview.  
Texts between Belichick and Flores
“The text messages from Bill Belichick confirmed a lot of things I believed were going on for blacks and minorities in the hiring process. Interviews that blacks and minorities were going on, where we weren’t getting a true opportunity in those interviews to showcase our abilities … to walk into an interview where a decision is already made, that was the tipping point for me. That confirmation was something that I felt like I had to say something,” Flores said.
“A couple of days after they [fired Joe Judge], I got a call from [owner] John Mara saying he was very interested in bringing me in and was looking forward to speaking to me. They were going to make their GM hire first, but I was high on their list. I did a Zoom with him the next week. I felt like I had a legitimate shot at getting this job. The text messages from Bill, that exchange, that was a tough pill to swallow.”
During his media tour this week, Flores told CNN that Belichick did not know he was publishing the text messages or filing the lawsuit. Flores added that he hasn’t spoken to the Patriots coach since.
Bill Belichick on Dec. 26, 2021EPA
The Giants released a statement Thursday, addressing Belichick’s affiliation with the team.
“The allegation that the Giants’ decision had been made prior to Friday evening, January 28, is false. And to base that allegation on a text exchange with Bill Belichick in which he ultimately states that he ‘thinks’ Brian Daboll would get the job is irresponsible. The text exchange occurred the day before Coach Daboll’s in-person interview even took place. Giants’ ownership would never hire a head coach based only on a 20-minute Zoom interview, which is all that Mr. Daboll had at that point,” the statement read.
“In addition, Mr. Belichick does not speak for and has no affiliation with the Giants. Mr. Belichick’s text exchange provides no insight into what actually transpired during our head coaching search.”
Belichick was defensive coordinator for former Giants head coach Bill Parcells in the 1980s, and helped the team win its first two Super Bowl titles. Belichick also highly recommended Judge when the Giants hired their now former head coach two years ago.

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