A collection of past emails from Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden have been found to contain misogynistic and homophobic language in addition to the one that surfaced last week, according to a report from the New York Times. On the heels of that news, it has been reported that Gruden will resign from his position as the team’s head coach, per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero. The NFL had sent these emails to the Raiders for review and was actively monitoring the situation to see how the organization will handle the matter, per NFL Insider Adam Schefter.
Gruden has “casually and frequently” used misogynistic and homophobic language to “denigrate people around the game” and “to mock some of the league’s momentous changes”, as he denounced the emergence of women as referees, the drafting of a gay player, and the tolerance of players protesting, according to emails reviewed by the New York Times.
Gruden’s disparaging remarks came to light during the NFL’s workplace misconduct investigation into the Washington Football Team. The league uncovered a message from Gruden to former Washington general manager Bruce Allen in which Gruden had described Executive Director of the National Football League Players Association DeMaurice Smith by a racial trope, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Gruden’s message was sent to Allen in July 2011, at the height of the NFL lockout. At the time Gruden was out of coaching and working at ESPN, where he called Monday Night Football, in addition to serving as an analyst for other broadcasts.
Gruden reportedly wrote, “Dumboriss (sic) Smith has lips the size of michelin (sic) tires.”
“The email from Jon Gruden denigrating DeMaurice Smith is appalling, abhorrent, and wholly contrary to the NFL’s values. We condemn the statement and regret any harm that its publications may inflict on Mr. Smith or anyone else,” the NFL said in a Friday statement.
In a series of tweets Monday evening, Smith acknowledged Gruden had contacted him, to which he replied, “we will connect soon.”
“But make no mistake, the news is not about what is said in our private conversation, but what else is said by people who never thought they would be exposed and how they are going to be held to account,” Smith tweeted.
The Raiders condemned Gruden’s behavior in a Friday statement.
“The content of an email regarding DeMaurice Smith from Jon Gruden when he worked for ESPN 10 years ago is disturbing and not what the Raiders stand for. We were first made aware of the email late yesterday by a reporter and are reviewing it along with other materials provided to us today by the NFL. We are addressing the matter with Coach Gruden and will have no further comment at this time.”
Gruden has since apologized for his remarks. He says his references to Smith in the email were not intended to be racial, but play off of a term he used to describe people as liars.
“I’m really sorry,” Gruden said. “I was upset, I used a horrible way of explaining it. I don’t think he’s dumb. I don’t think he’s a lair. I don’t have a racial bone in my body, and I’ve proven that for 58 years.”