You can add Ray Horton and Steve Wilks’ names to the list of former NFL coaches who have accused the league of racial discrimination.
Wilks, who’s a former Arizona Cardinals head coach, and Horton, who was a defensive coordinator for several different teams, both joined Brian Flores’ racial discrimination class action lawsuit against the league today, citing their own experiences with racism during the hiring process.
In Wilks’ case, he claims that he was only considered a “bridge” option when hired to replace Bruce Arians as the Arizona Cardinals’ head coach in 2018. Wilks claims he was never given a proper opportunity to succeed and keep his job, as he was “unjustly” fired after just one season. Meanwhile, Cardinals general manager Steve Keim, who’s white, was allowed to keep his job for several seasons, despite a DUI arrest and several poor personnel decisions.
As for Horton, his allegations are directed at the Tennessee Titans, who he claims brought him in for a sham interview in 2016. According to his statement, he was simply brought in to satisfy the team’s need to meet the Rooney Rule, as they had already decided to hire Mike Mularkey before they even interviewed Horton.
These are some pretty serious allegations being made against the NFL. And based on some recent audio that’s come to light, it appears as though Horton has a pretty strong case against the league and the Titans organization.
Wilks led the Cardinals to a 3-13 record as their head coach in 2018. He was fired and joined the Cleveland Browns as a defensive coordinator for a season. He is currently the defensive passing game coordinator and secondary coach for the Carolina Panthers.
As for Horton, he last coached in 2019 as Washington’s defensive backs coach.