Former NFL head coach Jon Gruden resigned from the Las Vegas Raiders last year. His resignation came after emails were leaked that showed him routinely using offensive language in a racist, sexist and homophobic manner.
The emails were discovered as part of an NFL investigation into workplace misconduct in the Washington Commanders franchise. Recent reports suggest that these kinds of emails were a theme during Gruden's tenure and that they occurred for many years.
The former head coach was recently seen at the Little Rock Touchdown Club, where he was asked about the scandal. Gruden apologized, saying:
"I'm not gonna say anything but honest things here. I'm ashamed of what has come about in these emails and I'll make no excuses for it."
He went on to defend his character, saying:
"I am a good person, I believe that. I go to church. I've been married 31 years, we got three great boys. I still love football. I've made some mistakes, but I don't think anyone in here hasn't."
His apology fell on deaf ears to the NFL community, who took the opportunity to voice how they felt about him. Herer are some of the comments:
Jon Gruden is part of an ongoing lawsuit with the NFL over his exit from the Raiders and the leaking of the emails.
John Gruden's former franchise, the Las Vegas Raiders compete in stacked AFC West
After Gruden stepped down, the Las Vegas Raiders managed to make the playoffs in the 2021 season. They lost 26-19 in the Wild Card round to the Cincinnati Bengals. There's good reason to believe they can go further in the upcoming campaign.
The Raiders hired Josh McDaniels, a head coaching prospect who's been very desirable for years. They also traded for Davante Adams, arguably the best wide receiver in the NFL. Perhaps more importantly, they won't have the distractions that hung over them last season.
However, they play in by far the toughest division in the NFL. The AFC West has four legitimate contenders in the Raiders, the Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Chargers and the Denver Broncos. The Broncos have added Russell Wilson to drive the side forward and the Chargers have signed Khalil Mack to improve their pass rush.
All four teams could technically make the playoffs, with one division winner and three wild card spots. However, that would be unprecedented and is highly unlikely.
The Raiders are probably not going to usurp the division crown from Kansas City, which puts them into the slog of the AFC Wild Card picture.
Several teams outside the AFC West will be competing for those spots, including teams from the AFC North (Baltimore Ravens, Cleveland Browns, Cincinnati Bengals and Pittsburgh Steelers). The New England Patriots and Miami Dolphins will be fighting too, presuming they finish behind the Buffalo Bills in the AFC East. Whichever side doesn't win the AFC South will be a threat too, and that will likely be either the Indianapolis Colts or the Tennessee Titans.
The Raiders are facing an uphill battle, but there's no reason to assume they can't compete for a playoff spot.
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