Former Lions’ DB Fired By Christian School For Old Instagram Post Where He’s Holding Alcohol
Rick Chandler 06:39 pm, February 24th, 2017
Welcome to Strong Rock Christian School in Locust Grove, GA -- where they just hired a former Detroit Lions defensive back to turn around their struggling football program.
And then 20 days later, they fired him.
Fernando Bryant, who played nine seasons in the NFL for the Jaguars, Lions and Steelers, was fired by the school before the season even started. Presumably it was due to a parent who found a three-year-old Instagram post by his wife that showed the two of them posing while holding a bottle of alcohol at a charity event. KNBC-11 Atlanta:
"I was led to believe it was my wife’s [post]. They never showed it to me or never said anything other than a parent brought it to their attention," Bryant said.
Bryant's wife, Amber Bryant, was a television personality on Bravo's show Mother Funders, a show that follows a PTO at Bethlehem Elementary School in Locust Grove, Ga.
Strong Rock wasn't an immovable object this past season -- the Patriots were 3-7, and were outscored 178-52 in their final three games.
But after enduring a rigorous hiring process during which he turned down four other coaching offers, Bryant was hired, and then fired three weeks later. The school's letter to Bryant, obtained by KNBC:
This letter will confirm that Strong Rock Christian School has made a decision not to move forward with your employment in the position of head coach of the football team and physical education teacher. As we discussed, after we made the offer to you, some within our parent community raised concerns regarding your family’s public presence on social media and the internet and questioned whether the postings and information were consistent with our Christian values. We’re sorry that our relationship had to end before it started. We wish you the best.
"I don’t know if they went back three years," Bryant said. "I know they went through her social media and everything. They actually called her in and spoke with her during the interview process, so I don’t really know, to be honest."
Bryant said he may pursue legal action against the school, but he is still exploring his options.
"It is a little disheartening. I went through a long process," Bryant said.
A KNBC source said that the school had seen the photo in question before hiring Bryant, and fired him only after a parent (or parents) complained. "Strong Rock", indeed.
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