David Becker / AP
Published Monday, Oct. 11, 2021 | 6:18 p.m.
Updated Monday, Oct. 11, 2021 | 11:45 p.m.
Jon Gruden resigned as Las Vegas Raiders’ coach Monday evening.
His resignation directly followed a New York Times report of pervasive homophobic and misogynistic comments in a string of e-mails beginning in 2010. The messages, which also reportedly included pornographic material, were sent to Washington Football Team executive Bruce Allen and discovered as part of an unrelated investigation into that franchise.
"I love the Raiders and do not want to be a distraction," Gruden said in a statement. "Thank you to all the players, coaches, staff, and fans of Raider Nation. I’m sorry, I never meant to hurt anyone."
"I have accepted Jon Gruden's resignation as Head Coach of the Las Vegas Raiders," team owner Mark Davis said in a statement.
The latest report followed news of racist language used against DeMaurice Smith, executive director of the NFL Players’ Association, that came out Friday afternoon. The Raiders opted not to take any disciplinary action going into Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears, as Gruden coached in a 20-9 loss despite his controversy hanging over the action on the field.
Gruden repeatedly apologized and asserted he wasn’t a racist but said he would no longer discuss the situation at his weekly Monday morning news conference. The Raiders’ players expressed support initially but none have made any public statement since the second set of derogatory comments, which included gay slurs directed at NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
Gruden steps down after a little more than four seasons into his second stint with the Raiders, going 22-31 in the span. Assistant head coach/special teams coordinator Rich Bissacia will take over head-coaching duties on an interim basis.
Bissacia has spent the last 19 years as an NFL assistant including the last four as part of Gruden's staff. He will hold his first news conference as Raiders' coach Wednesday afternoon.