NFL reacts aggressively to Gruden’s racist comment via email

The NFL responded forcefully and quickly Friday to a report that Jon Gruden used a racist comment about NFL Players Association leader Demoris Smith in an email 10 years ago.

The NFL responded forcefully and quickly Friday to a report that Jon Gruden used a racist comment about NFL Players Association leader Demoris Smith in an email 10 years ago.

A Wall Street Journal article noted that Groden, then at ESPN and now the Las Vegas Raiders coach, made a racist reference to Smith’s facial features.

“The email from Jon Gruden defaming Demoris Smith is appalling, abhorrent and wholly contrary to the values ​​of the NFL,” said NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy. “We condemn the statement and regret any harm that its publication may cause to Mr. Smith or anyone else.”

The association is looking into the matter, and a person familiar with this investigation told The Associated Press that disciplinary action is possible for Gruden. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because details of any investigation were not made public in the league.

Gruden’s comment came in an email to Washington’s then-headquarters soccer team, Bruce Allen, during the 2011 shutdown of players by the NFL. Gruden told the newspaper he was angry about the shutdown during labor negotiations and did not trust the direction the union was taking. The newspaper said he also apologized for the statement.

“The league has been notified of the existence of emails that raised issues outside the scope of this investigation,” McCarthy added during a review of workplace misconduct emails at the Washington Soccer team that was completed over the summer.

Roger Goodell added: “Over the past few months, at the direction of the commissioner, senior NFL executives have reviewed the content of more than 650,000 emails, including this email sent to a club employee. From this week, executives have provided a summary of that review to the commissioner and are sharing with Raiders executives emails related to Coach Gruden.”

___

More AP NFL coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

Copyright © 2021 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *