Sean McVay, like any other press conference on a Wednesday afternoon during game week for the Los Angeles Rams, touched all the usual bases that a head coach would do: Address the preparation and dive into the upcoming matchup.
Except this presser early on included McVay expressing what he called sadness and surprise. All because of the news involving one of his former bosses and mentors, Jon Gruden.
News of Gruden’s racial, misogynistic and offensive emails that led to him parting ways with the Las Vegas Raiders has dominated both the NFL and news landscape throughout the week of October 11.
McVay opened his October 13 press conference addressing that situation.
And McVay later said he was shocked by Gruden’s actions in the emails, saying “I have not seen that side of him.”
McVay’s Full Response
Before McVay took any questions regarding this league-wide topic, he immediately dove into the Gruden fallout.
“It’s really an unfortunate situation that’s gone on with the Raiders and coach Gruden,” McVay told reporters. “Hated that so many people have been negatively affected by this. Thoughts and prayers are with all those people that are, and really just want to leave it at that.”
McVay is the latest NFL personality and head coach to speak out about the Gruden fallout — joining a list that includes Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin, Gruden’s former Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson who called him a “fraud,” Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Buffalo Bills running back Zack Moss and countless of others.
McVay Reveals Family Member was on Email Chain
One name that was linked to the barrage of emails Gruden sent: A member of the McVay tree.
Outback Bowl executive Jim McVay, uncle of the Rams head coach, was mentioned in the New York Times article as someone who became a recipient of Gruden’s messages. McVay was forwarded these email exchanges Gruden had with ex-Washington Football Team executive and friend of Gruden Bruce Allen.
The 35-year-old Rams head coach addressed the situation involving the longtime bowl game executive:
McVay’s Past With Gruden
McVay’s first NFL job was offensive assistant with the Tampa Bay Bucs in 2008. The head coach at the time? Gruden himself.
He only spent one season on Gruden’s staff before coaching WR’s for the Florida Tuskers in the now-defunct United Football League. From there, he had a lengthy tenure with the Washington Football Team, where he also worked with Allen.
Again, McVay used the words “sad” and “unfortunate” to describe the situation.
“It’s a really unfortunate circumstance. I’m really sad by anyone negatively affected by this,” McVay said. “With the sensitivity of all the things that’s gone on in the past year, I’ve been raised to love people, to care about people and I think one of the great things about this game is you bring people together from a bunch of different backgrounds. And I think there becomes an understanding of you see people in their purest form.
“Saddened is an appropriate word and I’d like to think that there’s an atmosphere and environment here that’s about helping people reach their highest potential, having empathy, caring about people and that’s what I think we display and I think that’s what people here in this building display. And that’s really important to me.”
More from McVay’s presser can be seen below: