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Brian Flores to participate in NFL Coaching Accelerator Program

Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Brian Flores will be among 27 participants in the NFL’s fifth Accelerator Program, an event hosted by the league to strengthen the pool of diverse candidates for front office and coaching positions, during league meetings in Nashville, Tennessee, next week. .

Flores, a longtime assistant with the New England Patriots before becoming head coach of the Miami Dolphins from 2019 to 2021, filed a lawsuit in 2022 against the NFL and several teams alleging racial discrimination in its hiring practices. After being fired by the Dolphins, Flores spent one season with the Pittsburgh Steelers as a senior defensive assistant and linebackers coach before taking over as the Vikings’ defensive coordinator in 2023.

Last July, a federal judge ruled that Flores could pursue his claims against the league and three teams: the Denver Broncos, New York Giants and Houston Texans. The judge ruled last March that Flores must pursue his claims against the Dolphins through arbitration.

Flores was not an official participant in the program during last year’s spring meetings, but because the event was in Minneapolis, he visited a few people who were participating. Last year, he called the program “awesome” and added that “exposure leads to expansion. That’s a real and true statement.”

The Coach Accelerator program, which began in 2022, follows the Front Office Accelerator program held during the December league meetings in Dallas. Next week’s event will also include college coaches for the first time.

“Developing diverse coaching talent through the Accelerator program is a key priority,” NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement. “In its fifth iteration, this program continues to be an effective way for club owners and managers to be exposed to the unique skills and backgrounds of highly qualified coaching candidates, and for program participants to network with each other. others and participate in professional development sessions.

The event aims to introduce and familiarize candidates from diverse backgrounds with the league’s decision-makers. Thanks in part to his participation in the inaugural 2022 Accelerator Program, Ran Carthon was hired last year as general manager of the Tennessee Titans following his position as director of player personnel for the San Francisco 49ers.

None of the 2023 Coaching Accelerator Program participants landed a head coaching job during the most recent hiring cycle, but several accepted new coordinator positions, including former defensive coordinator of the Buffalo Bills Leslie Frazier, who was hired this year by Mike Macdonald’s Seattle Seahawks team as an assistant head coach.

“Since its inception, the Coaching Accelerator has prepared candidates for success in various coaching roles while cultivating relationships with key executives and decision-makers,” Vikings owner and president Mark Wilf said in a statement. “The program is mutually beneficial for participants and clubs because it removes barriers to access and educational tools essential to success. I am proud of the progress already made and look forward to seeing the continued growth of the Accelerator.

Others in the 2024 program include former Texans offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton, Giants offensive coordinator Mike Kafka, Seahawks quarterbacks coach Charles London and Detroit Lions running backs coach Scottie Montgomery .

ESPN’s Kevin Seifert contributed to this report.

News Source : www.espn.com
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