Jon Gruden, coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, resigned Monday night. He did it hours after racist, homophobic and misogynistic phrases came to light from the manager of the NFL team, the professional American football league. “I love the Raiders and I don’t want to be a distraction… Sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt anyone, ”Gruden, 58, said in a tweet posted by the Nevada team. Mark Davis, the organization’s owner, has accepted the departure of the helmsman, who won the Super Bowl with Tampa Bay in 2003 and was a star commentator on ESPN.
“I have resigned as Head Coach of the Las Vegas Raiders. I love the Raiders and do not want to be a distraction. Thank you to all the players, coaches, staff, and fans of Raider Nation. I’m sorry, I never meant to hurt anyone. “
– Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) October 12, 2021
Gruden became embroiled in the controversy on Friday, when The Wall Street Journal reported that the coach – who had arrived in Las Vegas in 2018 on a 10-year, $ 100 million contract – had used a racist phrase in the past to describe the head of the league’s players union, DeMaurice Smith. “[Tiene] Michelin tire size lips, ”wrote Gruden, raised in a family of coaches. His father worked in the collegiate league at Notre Dame and his brother Jay led the Washington squad.
The journalistic revelation caused a stir in the league, which called the comments “appalling” and “abhorrent.” Gruden half apologized saying that he did not recall sending that email and that there was no “speck” of racism in it. Despite the controversy, the coach was in Sunday’s loss to the Bears 20-9.
The controversy started by the Journal it was just the beginning of a storm that had been looming a week ago, when the NFL announced that it had shared a series of emails written between 2011 and 2018. These communications were part of an investigation into an allegation of mistreatment at work that, initially, it wasn’t aimed at Gruden. But those in charge of the investigation found several defamatory phrases from the head of the Raiders, who had already been in charge of the team between 1998 and 2001.
This Monday, The New York Times published some of those emails. “Fag,” Gruden called 10 years ago to Commissioner Roger Goodell, the highest authority in the league. Gruden was then a star commentator for ESPN. In a series of emails sent to Bruce Allen, the president of the Washington team, formerly called the Redskins, the announcer was very tough on the commissioner’s efforts to reduce head injuries in the league. “He is an anti-football fag who has no idea,” he qualified in another message. Gruden also called for the firing of players who knelt to protest systemic racism in the United States.
In another message to Allen, he criticized the San Luis Rams coach for accepting “weirdos” into his team in a reference to Michael Sam, a gay player signed by the team in 2014. Gruden has Carl Nassib on his defensive line. , who became the first NFL athlete to come out of the closet playing in the league in June. When the defender made the announcement, he received messages of support from colleagues and his team.
Allen and Gruden also exchanged photographs of half-naked women and misogynistic and pejorative comments about female referees, a recent innovation. Allen was fired from the Washington team in 2019 following an internal investigation, while Gruden now appears to be the lowest hours in nearly 40 years of history.