NFL

Belichick does not speak for Giants, team say of text in Flores lawsuit

By Sports Desk February 03, 2022

The New York Giants insist they decided on their next head coach only after interviewing Brian Flores, disputing claims made in a class action lawsuit he filed against the league.

Flores alleged in the suit that the NFL is rife with racism and has a "disingenuous commitment to social equity".

He is suing the league along with teams at whose hands he claims he experienced racism, naming former team the Miami Dolphins along with the Giants and Denver Broncos as defendants, together with "John Doe Teams 1 through 29".

The NFL said Flores' claims "are without merit", saying it would put up a defence. The three teams named by Flores also rejected his allegations.

Among the allegations made by Flores is that he inadvertently learned he had failed to get the Giants job last week before his interview, which the lawsuit claims was "a sham" that "humiliated" him.

The suit contains screen grabs of an alleged text message conversation between New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick and Flores, in which Belichick congratulates Flores on what he believes is an impending appointment, only to realise he was messaging the wrong person, having intended to contact Brian Daboll, who got the Giants job.

During the text exchange, Flores questioned whether Belichick had messaged the correct person, with the Patriots coach having indicated he had inside knowledge on who would land the job.

According to the lawsuit's contents, Belichick at this point realised his error and apologised to Flores, who worked for him for 10 years with the Patriots.

However, the Giants released a lengthy statement on Thursday, saying: "The decision on who we would hire as head coach was made on the evening of January 28, one day after Mr. Flores spent an entire day in our offices going through his second interview for the position, meeting with ownership and other staff members, and receiving a tour of our facility."

The team added Belichick would have no knowledge of any decision, as the alleged conversation suggested.

"The allegation that the Giants' decision had been made prior to Friday evening, January 28, is false," the Giants said.

"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.

"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."

The Giants included a timeline of Flores' day at their facility and said: "We hired Brian Daboll as our head coach at the conclusion of an open and thorough interview process. No decision was made, and no job offer was extended, until the evening of January 28, a full day after Mr. Flores' in-person interview and day-long visit to the Giants."

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