The email scandal surrounding Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden has finally come to a head. Gruden has told his staff that he plans to resign as the Raiders head coach, according to NFL Media’s Tom Pelissero.
This news comes in wake of a New York Times story on Monday, October 11, that shared details from emails reviewed by the outlet that included misogynistic and homophobic comments made by Gruden.
The New York Times reported:
He denounced the emergence of women as referees, the drafting of a gay player and the tolerance of players protesting during the playing of the national anthem, according to emails reviewed by The New York Times.
Gruden’s messages were sent to Bruce Allen, the former president of the Washington Football Team, and others, while he was working for ESPN as a color analyst during ‘Monday Night Football,’ the sports network’s weekly prime-time telecast of N.F.L. games. In the emails, Gruden called the league’s commissioner, Roger Goodell, a ‘faggot’ and a ‘clueless anti football pussy’ and said that Goodell should not have pressured Jeff Fisher, then the coach of the Rams, to draft ‘queers,’ a reference to Michael Sam, a gay player chosen by the team in 2014.
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Bieniemy Possible Candidate for Raiders?
Now that Las Vegas will be looking for a new head coach once their season is over, one has to wonder if they will dip into the AFC West coaching pool to select their next candidate. That’s why Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy should be brought up here.
Bieniemy began his coaching tenure in the NFL as a running backs coach for the Minnesota Vikings in 2006, per Pro Football Reference. After five seasons in Minnesota, he opted to head to the collegiate ranks, where he became the offensive coordinator for Colorado for the 2011 and 2012 seasons. Bieniemy then made his way back to the NFL, taking a job as the running backs coach for the Chiefs in 2013.
After five years in that role, Bieniemy was promoted to offensive coordinator in 2018, which was the same year Patrick Mahomes was named the starting quarterback for the Chiefs. Since then, Kansas City’s offense has ranked top seven in the league in yards and touchdowns since 2019, per Pro Football Reference.
This season, Kansas City’s offense ranks fifth in the league in points per game through five weeks of play (30.8) and third in yards per game (420.4), per ESPN.
Time will tell if Bieniemy is someone Las Vegas is interested in being the next head coach of the Raiders. But plenty of fans and media took to Twitter to show their support of Las Vegas considering Bieniemy for the job.
Impact on AFC West
Headed into Week 6, the Raiders (3-2) are third place in the AFC West, below the Los Angeles Chargers (4-1) and Denver Broncos (3-2), and above the Kansas City Chiefs (2-3). However, things could spiral quickly in wake of Gruden’s resignation.
After winning their first three games of the regular season, Las Vegas is in the midst of a two-game losing stream, falling victim to the Chargers and Chicago Bears, respectively. In terms of divisional matchups coming up, they travel to Denver to face the Broncos in Week 6 and face the Chiefs for the first time this season in Week 10. The Raiders’ bye is in Week 8, right after they host the Philadelphia Eagles.
It’s still unknown who will be the interim head coach for the Raiders. But seeing as this is a massive distraction for the team and the Raiders were already spiraling after starting the season off 3-0, it could get ugly for Las Vegas rather quickly.
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