Ex-NFL Employee Claims NFL Films Keeps Video Of Women With Sexual Remarks, League Fires Back

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A former temporary NFL human resources worker says in an employment discrimination lawsuit that the league’s NFL Films unit has an archive of footage with sexualized and offensive descriptions of women.

Victoria Russell, a black woman, says in her complaint that NFL Films’ database includes timestamps with “footage descriptions” that include “cheerleader buttocks,” “cheerleaders rear end,” “female fan in bikini top,” “naughty camera work,” “close up of cheerleader’s breasts,” “cleavage shots,” “shot of endowed woman” and “random woman, cleavage shot.” 

From the sound of things, it’s quite a hotspot for Internet content, but Russell isn’t amused by such files and now she’s using these file tags as part of her workplace discrimination lawsuit.

Naturally, the NFL is fighting back and saying the file stamps are defensive mechanisms. NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told the Wall Street Journal that such content is marked with “sensitive” titles as a big heads-up for NFL Films editors to leave out of future productions.

A camera operator films warm-ups before a 2015 game in Miami. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)

“Those frames are logged as ‘sensitive’ so that they can be removed from circulation, meaning they will not be accessible to employees whose job it is to locate footage for productions,” McCarthy added. “Ms. Russell didn’t have credentials for the logging system, nor did any aspect of her responsibilities involve accessing footage.”

Look, it’s a workplace discrimination lawsuit. Russell’s team is throwing out things like the league didn’t give her a dedicated workspace (not sure what that gets you these days in a lawsuit), they denied her pay raises (been there, Victoria), and she didn’t receive the advancement opportunities afforded to white, male employees.

In a rather explosive allegation, Russell also alleges she was “fired” after she complained of her treatment to the NFL’s chief diversity officer.

Yes, the NFL has a Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer.

The NFL counters that, in no certain terms, Ms. Russell is nuts and she has a baseless lawsuit, but let’s face it, the best thing to come out of this is the news that NFL Films has a Cinemax After Dark database that needs to be investigated.

  1. Let’s focus on this “naughty camera work” that Russell’s lawyers brought up. Are we talking like NFL Films guy getting footage of boob luges going down out in the parking lots during tailgating? McCarthy needs to clarify what we’re talking about here. Give us an idea, maybe a 1-5 scale, on the level of “naughty” going on here.
  2. The NFL is a massive company. Does it employ an editor who comes up with these tags for NSFW footage? Does some guy named Phil sit there at his computer all day fielding questions on Slack about how to title some women in the stands flashing the NFL Films cameras? “ATTN: We’ve got BOOBS at the 2:11:04 mark, boys. Let’s be careful here. I need this one titled, ‘Suburban mom Cheesehead breasts.'”
  3. How aggressive are the NFL Film crews in the name of content? Are we talking camera on-the-ground shots of the cheerleaders?
  4. I’m no lawyer, but basic shots of cheerleaders on the sidelines with “cheerleader buttocks” tags in the database seems like some of the more innocent stuff the NFL has done in the last 40 years.
  5. Who serves as the last line of defense for NFL Films? Does this go all the way up to Roger Goodell, who must decide if a cleav shot is too sultry?

Russell’s lawsuit alleges she was working on an audit of the human resources’ system when she came across a chat room log where these Skin-a-max timestamps were being discussed and BOOM not it’s in her lawsuit. Apparently, she was offended by such timestamps.

Look, we’ll have to see how this one plays out. Did Russell’s team think the NFL would fold based on a few NFL Films’ database timestamps that would create tabloid headlines? If that was the play here, it didn’t work because the NFL still has Daniel Snyder out there and the allegation that cheerleader highlight reel footage was created for the owner.

Written by Joe Kinsey

Joe Kinsey is the Senior Director of Content of OutKick and the editor of the Morning Screencaps column that examines a variety of stories taking place in real America.

Kinsey is also the founder of OutKick’s Thursday Night Mowing League, America’s largest virtual mowing league.

Kinsey graduated from University of Toledo.


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  1. ANY charges and accusations against the quite evil hypocrite Roger Goodell are to be enthusiastically endorsed … and amplified by the internet behemoth OUTKICK. Seeing Rog doing the perp walk in an orange jumpsuit would make a keen poster.

    Lets link him somehow to Murder In Tuscaloosa ….

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