The NFL announced that the Miami Dolphins will forfeit their 2023 first-round NFL Draft pick and a third-round pick out of the 2024 Draft. Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is also prohibited from being at the team's facilities until October 17. The NFL fined him $1.5 million.
The NFL said the Dolphins had impermissible contact with quarterback Tom Brady and coach Sean Payton while they were under contracts with other teams.
The league also claimed that Ross told then coach Brian Flores that the Dolphins' draft pick was more important than winning or losing games. An investigation also determined that Flores was told in jest by Ross that he would earn $100,000 for losing games.
Flores is suing the Dolphins. The suit claims he and other coaches faced racial discrimination in getting hired.
"Every club is expected to make a good faith effort to win every game," Commissioner Roger Goodell said. "The integrity of the game, and public confidence in professional football, demand no less. An owner or senior executive must understand the weight that his or her words carry, and the risk that a comment will be taken seriously and acted upon, even if that is not the intent or expectation. Even if made in jest and not intended to be taken seriously, comments suggesting that draft position is more important than winning can be misunderstood and carry with them an unnecessary potential risk to the integrity of the game."