Brian Flores seeks court order compelling NFL to provide information on the issue of arbitration

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The NFL wants to have its cake and hide it.

As the league attempts to force the Brian Flores case into arbitration, Flores wants certain information from the league that will be relevant to the issue of whether arbitration is appropriate. The league has refused the request. Flores, through his lawyers, has asked the presiding judge to order the NFL to provide the information.

The argument is simple. Flores (and his co-plaintiffs, Steve Wilks and Ray Horton) believe that certain information will be necessary to the question of whether the league’s request to move the case to arbitration should be granted.

Attached to the six-page letter is a list of 10 different types of materials Flores has requested: (1) all documents regarding the NFL’s policies and procedures regarding arbitration; (2) all documents regarding agreements and policies between the plaintiffs and any NFL team, including contracts, handbooks, and related materials; (3) all documents regarding the Commissioner’s compensation over the past 10 years; (4) all documents regarding the Commissioner’s negotiations regarding his compensation over the past 10 years; (5) all documents regarding the evaluation of the Commissioner’s performance; (6) all documents regarding the Commissioner’s involvement in any dispute involving any NFL team; (7) all documents regarding the Commissioner’s “personal, social, and/or professional relationship with any NFL team owners and/or senior executives” (or, alternatively, a full disclosure of all such relationships); (8) all documents regarding the Commissioner’s “personal, social and/or professional relationship” with any lawyer or law firm representing any of the defendants in the case; (9) all documents regarding any statements or communication among NFL senior executives regarding the plaintiffs, the lawsuit, and the allegations in the complaints; and (10) all documents supporting or undermining the contention that the plaintiffs agreed to arbitrate their claims with the NFL.

The plaintiffs also want to question the Commissioner under oath regarding the issues relating to whether the case should be arbitrated.

The effort to compel the NFL to produce the requested information shows that, among other things, Flores and his fellow plaintiffs plan to attack the arbitration process as entailing impermissible bias on the part of the arbitrator — the Commissioner, or his designee. Even though the NFL’s paperwork seeking an order compelling arbitration didn’t even mention the issue, one of the key questions will be whether the Commissioner can provide a fair, neutral, and impartial forum, free from any bias. The plaintiffs want to be able to illustrate the extent of the Commissioner’s obvious bias; he works for the NFL and its team, and he is paid millions of dollars to do so. How can he ever be unbiased when the interests of one or more of the entities who pay him that kind of money are at issue?

Potentially bolstering the bias argument is the fact that, as mentioned in the letter, the NFL immediately declared the Flores case to be “without merit.” If the league run by the Commissioner has already expressed such an opinion, how can the Commissioner be trusted to be fair and impartial?

This effort to gather information could slow down the process of resolving the important question of where the Flores case will be resolved. However, the question of whether it plays out in court or in the NFL’s secret, rigged kangaroo court will go a long way toward determining the eventual outcome.

16 responses to “Brian Flores seeks court order compelling NFL to provide information on the issue of arbitration

  1. Flores signed contracts (plural) with NFL teams in which he agreed to settle any disputes through the arbitration process. The fact that arbitration now is not his best opportunity to extort a payment from the NFL doesn’t take away the fact that he signed this right away several times through contracts he signed for various coaching jobs in this league.

  2. The guy got canned because he was a bad coach. Everyone under him said so. So he is suing his current employer because he is disgruntled?? Gimme a break man.

    So glad he is not on my team. Hard guy to root for.

  3. nyfootballgiants says:
    July 1, 2022 at 1:01 pm
    Flores signed contracts (plural) with NFL teams in which he agreed to settle any disputes through the arbitration process. The fact that arbitration now is not his best opportunity to extort a payment from the NFL doesn’t take away the fact that he signed this right away several times through contracts he signed for various coaching jobs in this league.
    ———————————–

    You’re obviously not a lawyer (which I am). There’s not a contract signed that doesn’t have an escape clause from many of its provisions.

  4. Flores signed contracts (plural) with NFL teams in which he agreed to settle any disputes through the arbitration process. The fact that arbitration now is not his best opportunity to extort a payment from the NFL doesn’t take away the fact that he signed this right away several times through contracts he signed for various coaching jobs in this league.
    ———————————–

    You’re obviously not a lawyer (which I am). There’s not a contract signed that doesn’t have an escape clause from many of its provisions.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Actually I work in employment law….. The NFL drafted the contract and its language. What type of escape clause are they going to create that is not in their best interest? And frankly, why would they be open to negotiating to weaken their contract?

  5. I’m all for a fair trial, but some of the info they’re requesting, such as Goodell’s salary negotiations, are personal and should remain private. I just can’t see how they directly relate to Flores’ case. And speaking of Flores, I’m all for equality in the workplace, so why does this guy’s complaints annoy me so much?

  6. nyfootballgiants says:
    July 1, 2022 at 1:37 pm
    Flores signed contracts (plural) with NFL teams in which he agreed to settle any disputes through the arbitration process. The fact that arbitration now is not his best opportunity to extort a payment from the NFL doesn’t take away the fact that he signed this right away several times through contracts he signed for various coaching jobs in this league.
    ———————————–

    You’re obviously not a lawyer (which I am). There’s not a contract signed that doesn’t have an escape clause from many of its provisions.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Actually I work in employment law….. The NFL drafted the contract and its language. What type of escape clause are they going to create that is not in their best interest? And frankly, why would they be open to negotiating to weaken their contract?
    —————-
    How do you guys know whether or not there are escape clause(s) in his contacts. Have you read it?
    However I find this biased arbitration a bit ridiculous.

  7. You accepted the terms of your employment when you agreed to take the job, and now that you’ve been fired for poor performance you’re claiming the terms are unfair? You’ve also made the claim that you were offered $100,000 for every game you lost, but you’ve provided ZERO evidence that ever happened. You lost a lot of games so if you were being paid extra to lose you would have those extra deposits in your bank statements wouldn’t you? Where are they? Unless of course you’re now going to claim ownership paid you with bags of cash. Of course they didn’t, and you don’t have any bank records showing any extra deposits, because they don’t exist, because it never happened. Lastly you claim the NFL has a discriminatory hiring process that keeps minority coaches from getting jobs, and yet you yourself only had 3 minority coaches on your entire staff.

  8. Forced arbitration does not favor an employee. Or a credit card holder. Any time you see arbitration as a prerequisite to anything, back away. With a law suit, you have the discovery process to even the playing field and get everything out in the open.
    Why do you think the NFL insisted on this? They don’t want any of their dirty laundry or collusion exposed to full public view. It might attract unwanted Congressional attention and/or hurt the ratings.

  9. Actual football question, Mr. Florio, Esq. Are the Steelers going to be better with Mr. Flores as an assistant coach? What say you, Mikey?

  10. Flores only option is to prove arbitration doesn’t apply to his case since it is not about his employment. The courts, especially now, almost never rule against arbitration and the agreed arbitrator if it was agreed to in the signed contract no matter how corrupt, biased, paid or anywhere near fair on the issuance of a judgement. It is a losing battle to ask for that information for the commissioner since it is irrelevant since it was agreed on when Flores signed his contract that the league heavily tilts the process to ensure they win. Speaks of desperation and trying to get the case to be judged by the public.

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