The NFL’s only openly gay player, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib, took a personal day after coach Jon Gruden resigned following the surfacing of alleged racist and homophobic emails.
Raiders general manager Mike Mayock was the first member of the team to speak publicly after the scandal exploded. He told reporters on Wednesday that Nassib had officially requested a personal day to process what had occurred.
“He just said he’s got a lot to process,” Mayock commented during a press briefing. “There’s a lot that’s been going on the last few days. And, of course, we support that request.” He did not mention if Nassib would be sidelined for Sunday’s faceoff against the Broncos in Denver.
The emails in question occurred between 2011 and 2018. They were leaked this week to The New York Tims which rushed to expose them. Gruden reportedly used a number of anti-gay slurs in his emails along with other racist and misogynistic terminology.
(Video Credit: Raiders)
Gruden is said to have written an email in 2015 complaining that a gay player named Michael Sam was drafted by the St. Louis Rams. He claimed that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell pressured then-Rams coach Jeff Fisher to draft “queers.” He also called Goodell an anti-gay slur and a “clueless anti-football p***y” in an email.
The now-former Raiders coach is also said to have made disparaging remarks about NFL Players Association Executive Director DeMaurice Smith, stating, “Dumboriss Smith has lips the size of Michelin tires.” He blasted the league for hiring female referees as well.
Gruden also argued that former defensive back Eric Reid should have been booted for protesting during the National Anthem. He slammed a bill that would have forced the then-Washington Redskins to change their name, hit out at Caitlyn Jenner for being transgender, and lambasted former President Obama and then-Vice President Joe Biden.
Nassib announced he was gay during Pride Month on June 21 on his Instagram page. He also stated that he was planning on donating $10,000 to The Trevor Project that works to prevent suicide among LGBTQ youth.
Carl Nassib became the first active NFL player to come out as gay earlier this year, something he'd been "agonizing" over for 15 years.
— AJ+ (@ajplus) October 11, 2021
RAIDERS GM Mike Mayock: DL Carl Nassib, who is gay, requested a personal day. Said he has met with Nassib 3 times. Said Nassib is processing a lot of things and the team supports him. Mayock didn't mention ex-coach Gruden's homophobic emails, but that seemed to be behind this.
— Steve Wyche (@wyche89) October 13, 2021
Gruden had previously voiced his support for Nassib coming out. “I learned a long time ago what makes a man different is what makes him great,” he asserted.
The Gruden blowup culminated with his resignation on Monday. He evidently sent the emails to then-Washington Football Team executive Bruce Allen while he worked as an ESPN analyst. His disparaging remarks were reportedly aimed at individuals within the league.
The emails were discovered during a 10-month investigation by the NFL into hostile workplace allegations. When it was all said and done in July, the WFT was fined $10 million and the team owner Dan Snyder was forced to step down from operations of the club for a period of time.
“I have resigned as Head Coach of the Las Vegas Raiders,” Gruden announced in a statement. “I love the Raiders and do not want to be a distraction. Thank you to all the players, coaches, staff, and fans of Raider Nation. I’m sorry, I never meant to hurt anyone.”
Following the resignation of Gruden, Raiders assistant coach Rich Bisaccia has been named the team’s interim head coach.
- Southwest walks back its vaccine mandate in a big way - October 19, 2021
- Meghan McCain torches former ‘The View’ colleagues, reveals vicious incident that made her quit - October 19, 2021
- Miami private school tells vaxxed students to quarantine for 30 days as precautionary measure - October 19, 2021