How Brian Flores lawsuit will impact future of NFL


Through his lawsuit against the NFL, Brian Flores makes a clear statement: The Rooney Rule isn't the answer, and it needs to change.

Flores has sued the NFL, the New York Giants, and the Denver Broncos for racial discrimination in their head-coaching job searches. The lawsuit includes several allegations, including the Giants hiring Brian Daboll as their head coach three days before their interview with Flores -- a "sham" interview, as Flores put it -- was scheduled.

Pats players, NFL stars show support for Flores amid lawsuit

With the lawsuit, Flores hopes to force the league into overhauling what he deems to be an outdated policy.

"The Rooney Rule is also not working because management is not doing the interviews in good-faith, and it therefore creates a stigma that interviews of Black candidates are only being done to comply with the Rooney Rule rather than in recognition of the talents that the Black candidates possess," the complaint reads.

On a new episode of the Next Pats Podcast, former NFL executive Joe Banner joins Phil Perry to share his thoughts on Flores' lawsuit and how it could change the future of the league.

Next Pats Podcast: Former NFL executive reacts to Brian Flores suit: Rooney rule is NOT the answer | Listen & Follow | Watch on YouTube

"It's a really complex issue," Banner said. "The Rooney Rule isn't the answer. He's absolutely right about that. There are sham interviews just to comply with the rules. To say that that's wrong is very easy. I can't imagine any reasonable person not thinking that's wrong. But when you get to, well, what is the right answer? What steps could we actually take to make a difference? It's really complicated.

"It does start with the right attitude from the league and the owners as this being something that they have to recognize hasn't been done right or done well over the years and things need to change. I actually think some of the changes they've made in the last year or two for the first time have been consequential. It's invisible to the public but for the first time at the level of interns, quality control coaches all the way through coordinators, there's a much better representation of African Americans than there was a couple of years ago.

"I believe that's going to translate into improved representation at the head coaching level very soon. I just hope people realize the fact there are so few, that doesn't mean at least recently there hasn't been a legitimate effort. I think we've got to evolve and accelerate it, and I hope that's what comes out of the lawsuit."

Also discussed in this episode: Will other coaches need to join Flores to gain traction? Should the Patriots build around the offense or the defense? And potential Patriots fits to watch in the 2022 Senior Bowl.

Check out the latest episode of the Next Pats Podcast on the NBC Sports Boston Podcast Network, or watch on YouTube below:

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