Brain Flores’ lawsuit against the NFL has been amended to include two additional coaches.
Ray Horton, Steve Wilks, and Ray Horton both have an issue with the NFL. Ray Horton will be represented in the same way Flores is. Wilks was the Arizona Cardinals’ head coach for just one season in 2018. Horton, on the other hand, had 22 years experience as an assistant coach before he interviewed for the Tennessee Titans’ head coaching position in 2016.
The coaches lost their jobs to white coaches. This is their narrative.
Wilks contends that he was nothing more than a “bridge coach” for the Cardinals and that many of the personnel decisions he wanted to make for the organization’s future were disregarded because he was black. He also cites the fact that he was fired following a 3-13 season. His replacement Kliff Kingsbury, however, went 5-10-1 his first season. Kingsbury has still the job.
Black coaches and candidates must have the exact same opportunity to be employed and stay employed as candidates and coaches of other races. That is not currently the case, and I look forward to working with Coach Flores and Coach Horton to ensure that the aspiration of racial equality in the NFL becomes a reality,” Wilkes said.
Horton believes that he wasn’t given an equal chance to be a head coach. Horton is able to use the firepower of Mike Mularkey’s statement about the process used to interview for the position in 2016.
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Mularkey stated that Titans had informed him of his decision to accept the job before the interview was complete. Mularkey stated on “Steelers Realm”, that Amy Adams Strunk, the owner of the Titans, and her family came to his house and said they were going to make me the head coach for 2016. This was before the Rooney Rule. As they were going through the fake hiring process, I knew I was their head coach for ’16. I knew a lot about the interviewees, how prepared they were for those interviews and that they would do everything possible to get that job.
Although this may sound like the NFL is being racist, it’s not. However, if the argument is considered in context it becomes a lot more clear.
Mularkey was the interim head coach during the last nine games in 2015. It would have been logical that Mularkey would take over the position.
Horton, who was also the Titans defensive coordinator during the 2014-15 season, claimed that Horton was granted a “completely fraudulent interview to comply with Rooney Rule” and show an appearance of equality in order to be considered for the post. Horton may not have been hired to do the Rooney-rule interview, but that doesn’t mean he was racist. This simply means that the NFL did not require Horton to comply with its rules.
The case will be investigated, but we know that the story got even more intriguing.