Jon Gruden To Sue The NFL, Roger Goodell Over Leaked Email Scandal

Jon Gruden and his legal team are responding to the NFL after the head coach was forced to resign over a scandal involving 650,000 leaked emails that incriminated Gruden. The emails have been under the League’s watch and as they’ve denied providing the communications to media outlets, Gruden believes otherwise.

On Thursday, Gruden’s team submitted a lawsuit, claiming that the NFL was perpetrating a steady flow of leaked emails to force Gruden’s hand in stepping away from the team.

According to the lawsuit, provided by Tom Pelissero: “When their initial salvo did not result in Gruden’s firing or resignation, Defendants ratcheted up the pressure by intimating that further documents would become public if Gruden was not fired. They followed through with this threat by leaking another batch of documents to the New York Times for an October 11, 2021 article. On October 7, 2021, Jon Gruden was the head coach of the Raiders on a 10-year, $100-million contract. By October 11, 2021, he had been forced to resign.”

Also adding, “In contrast to the formalities of the Washington Football Team investigation, defendants’ treatment of Gruden was a Soviet-style character assassination. There was no warning and no process. Defendants held the emails for months until they were leaked to the national media in the middle of the Raiders’ season in order to cause maximum damage to Gruden.”

The initial wave of controversial emails occurred on Oct. 8, days leading up to the Raiders’ Week 5 matchup against the Chicago Bears. An email, sent by Gruden, contained a description of NFLPA executive DeMaurice Smith that many deemed as an insensitive racial troupe.

In the Week 5 post-game interview, Gruden soberly addressed the issue and appeared keen to move on with the weight on his shoulders.

“All I can say is I’m not a racist. I can’t tell you how sick I am,” Gruden said. “I apologize again to DeMaurice Smith. But I feel good about who I am and what I’ve done my entire life. I apologize again for the insensitive remarks. I had no racial intentions with those remarks at all.”

On Monday, the day after, more Gruden emails were released by The New York Times, which the litigation suspects is a coordinated effort by the NFL to sink Gruden into an escapable controversy.

The second wave of emails displayed use of “homophobic” slurs and sexually insensitive material. Though the bulk of the attention was on Gruden’s denouncing of drafting Michael Sam — the NFL’s first openly gay player — some of the slurs were directed at NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, leading many to perceive the unearthed emails as retaliatory action by the commissioner.

Gruden at one point called Goodell a “clueless anti-football p*ssy.”

The collection of emails dated back to Gruden’s time at ESPN, before he joined the Raiders for his second stint as head coach (2011-2018).

Washington Football Team executive Bruce Allen was a recipient of Gruden’s controversial messages. Raiders owner Mark Davis has called on the League to provide a written report of Washington’s involvement in the matter, but the NFL has so far held off and declared that no other insensitive messaging was found among the remaining 650,000 emails under Goodell’s surveillance.

Follow OutKick’s Armando Salguero as he provides an in-depth look at the ongoing rift between Gruden and the NFL.

Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela

Written by Alejandro Avila


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  1. I hope he burns Goodell and the NFL to the ground. This was tortious interference and discovery alone should be a treat.
    I’ll be happy watching college football on Saturdays and Sundays when Gruden owns the league.

  2. Wait a minute. So he didn’t send the racist homophobic emails? The NFL was wrong for leaking the emails but those were HIS EMAILS written by HIM. Not someone else, not Goddell or the Media. It is what it is…..Just Man up and take that “L”

    • They shouldn’t have leaked them. Period. They were not NFL property since he was working at espn when he wrote them and they were on his personal email account. Saying someone has big lips if they have big lips isn’t racist. Making fun of girls that get their lips over filled isn’t racist either. Everything isn’t racist. There is no way in hell John Gruden who coached black men for his entire career was a closet racist. With the amount of hateful ignorant shit that you spew out on a daily I would think you would know the difference between making fun of someone or being a bigot. Who am I kidding, you are an exceptionally low iq individual, never mind.

    • The emails were pretty tame, he was saying shit everyone else was thinking, and saying them to friends…. Not sure why anyone has to get so upset about this trivial shit, grow some balls and quit whining. I’ll be glad when people decide this wokety-woke crap is bullshit.

    • Get over yourself idiot. So what you don’t listen to hip hop? Ever spend any time in locker rooms with black athletes? No and no I am sure. You act so hurt over some fucking email but if (I seriously doubt you are black) you are black you are a liar that words can hurt so bad. The dudes I grew up playing basketball, football and baseball with and against talked so much shit to each other and that’s where I learned my shit talking game, are not hurt by some dumb ass email. Talk about manning up and soft. You sir are a clown and a fraud.

  3. Hopefully Gruden gets a huge payout and the court orders the release of all 650,000 emails obtained during investigation.

    Balls Don’t Lie is probably sitting in his mom’s basement in his shit stained tighty whities playing video games tonight.

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