Raiders coach Jon Gruden resigns after ‘disturbing’ comments are made public

Wynton Jackson | Staff Writer

Las Vegas Raiders coach Jon Gruden announced his resignation Oct. 11 after a probe through the Washington Football Team’s emails for a legal inquiry found he sent numerous racist, misogynistic and homophobic comments within the organization, The New York Times reported.

The first wave of messages emerged Oct. 8, headlined by Gruden’s comments about National Football League Players Association Executive Director DeMaurice Smith. A particular assertion from Gruden to then-Washington GM Bruce Allen in 2011 stated that Smith “has lips the size of Michelin tires,” according to The Wall Street Journal

Raiders owner Mark Davis called his coach’s comments “disturbing,” ProFootballTalk reported, yet Gruden still coached in a losing effort to the Chicago Bears that Sunday. 

The following day, more emails came out where Gruden was caught using homophobic slurs toward NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, according to The New York Times. The Times added that there were also numerous pictures of women wearing only bikinis bottoms exchanged between Gruden and Allen, including women on the Washington cheerleading squad. 

More than 650,000 emails were uncovered in an unrelated investigation into the Washington Football Team. The Times reported that the pattern of derogatory comments between Gruden and Allen lasted from 2011 to 2018.

The Raiders did not fire Gruden, and he stepped down from his position because what he said became public. Gruden even had some supporters within the media, including journalist Jason Whitlock on Twitter.

“[Gruden] said something in a private email that was intended for one person to read/know. Anybody insulted is someone who spends their life looking to be insulted,” Whitlock tweeted.

The Raiders named special teams coach Rich Bisaccia as the interim head coach, according to the New York Times.

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