The Pittsburgh Steelers announced Saturday (Feb. 19) that the organization has hired Brian Flores.
The former Miami Dolphins head coach will come onboard as a senior defensive assistant and linebackers coach. He joins a Steelers team that has employed a Black head coach in Mike Tomlin since 2007.
“I am excited about Brian Flores joining our coaching staff given his history of developing and teaching defensive players during his time in the NFL,” Tomlin said in a news release. “Brian’s resume speaks for itself, and I look forward to him adding his expertise to help our team.”
Once ex-Houston Texans head coach David Culley and Flores were fired after the 2021 season ended, Tomlin was the only Black coach in the NFL for some time. But Flores’ old team recently hired Mike McDaniels, whose father is African American.
Flores began his NFL coaching career as an assistant coach with the New England Patriots. He coached the Pats from 2008 to 2018. And served as the team’s defensive coordinator during his final season with them. New England won a championship during Flores’ final season with the team, making him a prime target for head coaching jobs at the time.
We have named Brian Flores as our senior defensive assistant/linebackers.
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) February 19, 2022
Flores landed the head coaching job with the Miami Dolphins in 2019. He was fired after accumulating a 24-25 record during his three seasons with the team.
As reported by REVOLT, Flores is suing the NFL, the Miami Dolphins, the New York Giants and the Denver Broncos. He claims he was discriminated against in the hiring process while interviewing with the Giants for the head coaching position.
Flores, who was fired from the Dolphins last month, says he was offered a “sham” interview with the Giants after the team had allegedly already picked a new head coach. In his lawsuit, Flores said he received a text from New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick a few days prior to his interview congratulating him on landing the job.
However, it turned out that Belichick meant to send the congratulatory message to former Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll, whom the Dolphins ultimately hired.
After realizing that the text was a mix-up, Fores told CBS News he felt a “range of emotions.”
“Humiliation, disbelief, anger,” he recalled. “I’ve worked so hard to get to where I am in football to become a head coach. [I’ve] put 18 years in this league.”
Flores’ attorneys released a statement shortly after his hiring saying, “while he is now focused on his new job, he will continue with his race discrimination class action so that real change can be made in the NFL.”
— WigdorLaw (@WigdorLaw) February 19, 2022
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