Jon Gruden says he's 'ashamed' about emails that ended Raiders tenure

Jon Gruden is currently suing the NFL over the emails that ended his tenure as head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, but that apparently doesn't mean he doesn't regret said emails.

The former Raiders and Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach addressed the issue at the Little Rock Touchdown Club on Tuesday, saying he was "ashamed" of the emails, but still believes himself to be a good person.

Gruden's comment:

"I'm not going to say anything but honest things here. I'm ashamed about what has come about in these emails. I'll make no excuses for it. It's shameful. But, I am a good person. I believe that. I go to church. I've been married for 31 years. I've got three great boys. I still love football. I've made some mistakes, but I don't think anybody in here hasn't. I just ask for forgiveness and, hopefully, I get another shot."

Gruden resigned from the Raiders job last year after a collection of emails came to light showing his correspondence with former Washington Commanders president Bruce Allen. The emails surfaced as part of the NFL's investigation into Washington's workplace culture, a process that resulted in a $10 million fine for the team, but no public release of the findings.

The emails contained a litany of slurs and other bigoted language, including calling NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a "fa****t" and a "clueless anti football p****y," criticizing Goodell for supposedly pressuring the Rams into drafting "queers" (referring to the openly gay Michael Sam), using racist language to describe NFLPA head DeMaurice Smith and complaining about the NFL's recently hired female referees and player protests for racial justice during the national anthem.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - OCTOBER 10:  Head coach Jon Gruden of the Las Vegas Raiders reacts during a game against the Chicago Bears at Allegiant Stadium on October 10, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Bears defeated the Raiders 20-9.  (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)
Jon Gruden may regret his reprehensible emails, but his lawyers are still pushing for a payout from the NFL over them. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images) (Ethan Miller via Getty Images)

The emails brought a swift end for Gruden and, eventually, litigation for the NFL. Gruden filed a lawsuit a month later claiming he was "forced to resign" and accusing the NFL and Goodell of trying to destroy his career using a "malicious and orchestrated campaign," seeking punitive damages from the league. Gruden's camp has questioned why his emails were leaked while the rest of the Washington investigation was kept under wraps.

The NFL has so far tried to shoot down the lawsuit by either having it dismissed or pushed into private arbitration, but a judge denied motions for both in May.