Former Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden is considering legal options against the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell after an email scandal revealing racist, homophobic and misogynist remarks earlier this month led to his resignation, according to one report.
Several lawyers have advised those close to Gruden that the former coach “could have a tortious interference case” over the handling of those emails that were reviewed as part of the league’s investigation into the Washington Football Team’s workplace misconduct, sources told CBS Sports.
Gruden sent the emails when he worked as an analyst for ESPN from 2010-2018 to then-team executive Bruce Allen.
Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden talks with quarterback Derek Carr (4) during the second half against the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium. (Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports)
Gruden could argue that the emails were private emails sent when he was not employed by the league, according to the report.
The NFL and Washington owner Dan Snyder have denied being responsible for the leaks, which first came to light in reports from the New York Times and Wall Street Journal.
Raiders owner Mark Davis called into question the timing of the emails released during last week’s Fall League Meeting.
“It’s a timing issue,” Davis told reporters. “That’s probably the disappointment that I had.”
Owner Mark Davis of the Las Vegas Raiders looks on before the game against the Denver Broncos at Empower Field At Mile High on Oct. 17, 2021, in Denver, Colorado. (Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
“The fact that they may have known about it a couple of months beforehand and didn’t let us know about that. We weren’t informed until, I guess it was that Thursday (Oct. 7), and we heard it from The Wall Street Journal initially. It was a rumor initially, they wouldn’t give us the email at the time, The Wall Street Journal wouldn’t. We spoke to the league later on that afternoon and by Friday (Oct. 8), they started giving us all the information, I spoke with the commissioner and those things. But I believed if we’d have gotten the information earlier in the summer when they learned about it, it would’ve been a lot easier for everyone involved.”
Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden wears an Oakland Raiders hat before an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers, Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)
Davis also called on the league to release a written report on the WFT findings, something Goodell has said the NFL would not do, citing the privacy of those who participated in the investigation.