Jon Gruden’s ex-partner Sean McDonough: I don’t know what Gruden’s doing

ESPN

Sean McDonough took a little shot at his former Monday Night Football broadcast partner Jon Gruden over Gruden’s decision to trade Khalil Mack.

McDonough, who now calls college football for ESPN, said in a promo for SportsCenter during the LSU-Miami game that he was anxious to watch because it would include Gruden’s comments about the Mack trade. McDonough then said he didn’t understand what Gruden was thinking in getting rid of such a great player.

“I’m anxious to hear this one, Jon Gruden and Khalil Mack talking about the trade,” McDonough said. “Khalil Mack traded by Oakland, by our man the Gru-dog, to the Chicago Bears. The Bears got a great player. I don’t know what my man the Gru-dog is doing. He got some draft picks, but that’s one of the best defensive players in the league. He could’ve been a Gruden Grinder. Now he’s a Chicago Bear.”

There was talk during the Gruden-McDonough partnership that the two men didn’t particularly enjoy working together, and before their last game together there was an awkward moment when McDonough announced that it was Gruden’s last game as a broadcaster while Gruden insisted he hadn’t officially been hired to coach the Raiders. McDonough had one last thing to say about his former partner on Sunday night.

77 responses to “Jon Gruden’s ex-partner Sean McDonough: I don’t know what Gruden’s doing

  1. Gruden fanboys talking on much cap Mack would fill or the picks for him, are missing the point: Gruden categorically stated they wanted Mack, would find a way to make it happen. But it now transpires they didn’t even really try, but just hoped all year Mack would play out his 5th season.

  2. It’s amazing how bad MNF has become. The best thing they can do is put it back on ABC but that’ll never happen.

  3. “He could’ve been a Gruden Grinder. Now he’s a Chicago Bear.”

    ====================================

    Mack is a generational talent and arguably the best defensive player in the league. As such he is his own man and has no need to ingratiate himself to anyone.

    That couldn’t have sat well with Gruden’s massive ego because “Gruden Grinders” are really players who can brown-nose their way into the good graces of the “coaching legend”. And that a probably a prime reason why Gruden wanted Mack off the team to the massive detriment of the Raiders.

  4. Just about any coaching decision has its detractors. The bigger the decision the more noise. If Gruden had turned down Chicago’s offer there would have been just as many saying that was nuts and how he squandered a great opportunity. It just would have been (mostly, not all) different people ripping him. The only thing that will ever tell us how this choice was is time. How does Mack fare going forward, how the Raiders fare with these picks. Right now everyone is guessing, even hough many report their guesses as fact we should just ignore that and remember its nothing but guessing.

  5. Gruden is building for the future! Nick Bosa will easily replace Mack for WAY less! Young guys like Key, Hall and Hurst made it easy to make this trade. It’s sad the haters can’t see how great this is for RaiderNation.

    Bears still worst team in that division!

    RN4L

  6. I think maybe Davis,Gruden, and big Reggie were all on the same page with this one. The big Mack got too big for his breeches and him and his agent wanted too much money. Also if McKensie has a policy of NOT negotiating with players not coming, there you have it. I don’t blame them a bit . The big Mack wanted too much money. Why hurt the rest of the team to appease one player.
    Good luck to the RAIDERS organization and players.

  7. rukiddnme29 says:
    Nobody really likes Gruden.
    ————–
    Oh I don’t know about that. I think Gruden really likes him some Gruden.

  8. rukiddnme29 says:
    September 3, 2018 at 6:53 am

    Nobody really likes Gruden.

    ==============

    As a Raider fan, I can’t stand Gruden. But I sincerely believe that those who wish to see the Raiders do poorly love Gruden for the way he has decimated the team.

  9. Well it seems they are more alike than people thought. It looks like Gruden doesn’t know what he’s doing either !!

  10. I mean, honestly, Gruden’s made some odd moves since he returned. But not giving $23M per year to a non-QB is not odd. Their defense overall was shoddy WITH Mack last year, and he gets injured quite a bit. So now maybe they use the picks to get a couple very good starters. Plus injuries don’t usually get LESS frequent as you age. I get that Mack is ridiculous when healthy, but they’d be basically running a 2 man team of Carr & Khalil out there every week, because they wouldn’t be able to afford anything else.

  11. You could always tell they did not like each other when they worked MNF. McDonough would always make Gruden sounds like an idiot after Gruden would make a comment.

  12. Everyone wants to be an armchair GM. Lol. Show me a teams or even one , because honestly I can’t think of one, that is paying multiple players (2+) over $20 mil/yr that has a winning record. We want to win. Mack wanted to be the highest defender paid more than wanting to be a Raider. That’s unfortunate, I’m a huge Mack fan.

    Now someone can begin the argument that they ( Raiders) are giving $20+ mil/yr to the wrong player. I would concur. Just remember, Gruden had no part with that. So it’s laughable to pin this on Gruden. His hands were tied.

    Just saying.

  13. What’s bad is a 56 year old guy is saying “Gru Dog”. He’s been around those college kids too much.

  14. Cool down the criticism,not even a game has been played yet.I’m a Raider fan,I don’t agree with the trade.but there is no way in he’ll you pay a defender more than your franchise Qb.

  15. Gruden seems to have an elite football IQ of coarse you dont understand why. Gruden owes no one an explination and we shouldnt expext one. What he does owe us as fans is a good decision. All that matters now is the Raiders need to put together a solid above 500. Gruden is the hot slam right now, everyone wants a shot at him. Im going to see how the team plays before i choose to attack.

  16. As a Bostonian, I love McDonough. I wasn’t thrilled when he was permanently replaced by my Red Sox with Don Orsillo, but Donny grew on me. I’m surprised the Celtics havent offered him a position considering Mike Gorman and Tommy won’t be around forever.

  17. It’s very obvious what he was doing. The Raiders were not prepared to make Kalil Mack the highest paid non-qb in the league. So they traded him. If you think Mack deserved to be the highest paid then i suppose you think it was a mistake to trade him. So….I hope I held mcdonough out.

  18. Shawn who. How about you leaving the cushy spot in the NFL, and being second hand fiddle in the both with the x college stars

  19. Rate This
    taintedsaints2009 says:
    September 3, 2018 at 6:48 am
    It’s amazing how bad MNF has become. The best thing they can do is put it back on ABC but that’ll never happen.

    ——————————————————————————————

    The best thing they can do is get rid of it and Thursday night football, too. Football was not meant to play on Monday and Thursday nights. And get rid of the games in Europe, too.

  20. I am most surprised that Gruden didn’t reach out to Mack and try to at least ingratiate himself to him. Apparently, the two never even talked and that’s surprising, to me. It reinforced Mack’s opinion that the Raiders didn’t want him.

  21. “I mean, a K’mack’s a K’mack, but a pick? A pick could be ANYTHING!!! It could even be a K’Mack! You know how much we’ve been wanting one of those!”

  22. I think most of us are thinking the same thing about the Mack trade, but I’m wondering if we’re jumping the gun. Gruden is signed on for ten years, this might be a long con. He might be following the Derek Jeter plan with the Marlins: dump your most expensive guy, albeit a transcendent player, and start from scratch building YOUR team, not working with what you inherited from the last guy, which obviously wasn’t working. Mack is a great player, but he’s ONE guy, and save for the QB, ONE guy isn’t going to make or break your team. I don’t know where you find that next stud to lead your defense, that obviously leaves a big hole, but the logic here has just got to be that he simply is not willing to invest that amount of cap space into a guy who isn’t your franchise QB. If I’m a new coach of a team, I’m probably trying to take a page from the Patriots’ book, from a cap management standpoint. The Pats have a unique situation with Brady, who is wildly unselfish and just wants to win, so he plays at a huge discount relative to his production level, and that gives the obvious advantage of retaining Tom Brady’s services for Sam Bradford money, allowing the team to build a better and deeper supporting cast. I think the Raiders may have a rough ride in 2018, but maybe in 2022 we’re signing a different tune in hindsight. Time will tell.

  23. Just wondering does anyone like any announcer? Every single one of them suck according to the commenters on this site. Maybe the league should put mimes in the booth.

  24. I love the narratives everyone makes up to justify their own misery, ha!

    For the FRONT OFFICE this is about MONEY. That’s all this is about. Not emotion. End of story.

    For the PLAYERS it might be very EMOTIONAL. He was the HEART of the team.

    As a business decision this might be very sound. As a team chemistry decision, it could be costly. But Jon Gruden has the luxury most coaches don’t (except Hue Jackson, ha). Jon Gruden has time. Players come and go. When he finally puts a team together that will buy in to what he’s selling, none of this will matter. If the Raiders win, none of this will matter. If they lose and can’t sell tickets or merchandise, maybe this will be the beginning of the end of everything.

  25. No one does. As Peter King pointed out as I did with the Donald contract, the salary cap goes up, a lot. By year four of the deal, it’ll be up by $40 or $45 million in his prime. Simply idiotic to trade one of the best players at his position for lottery tickets with a justification that “we can’t pay him.” Also, using the Patriots as your argument is DOA. Bellichick is the greatest coach of all time. Gruden is not. He’s not even in the same galaxy.

  26. McDonough, who now calls college football for ESPN. Nuf said.

    This was known all along by both sides. DOnt kid yourself.

    The powers that be knew Mack would not be back before the draft……

  27. The Raiders have had exactly one winning season in the last 15 years. Sixteen years ago they were in the super bowl, and the two years prior they were in the playoffs. Gruden was the coach for those playoff teams, and it was the team he helped build that made it to the super bowl. Gruden’s Tampa Bay Bucs won that super bowl. So it’s been really bad since Gruden’s been gone, and now he’s back. They were smart to bring him back to turn the team back to a winner. He’s going to try to find 53 good football players. There’s a salary cap, so you can’t tie up all that money on one player. I think if you’ve had one winning season in the last 15 years, you’d be happy someone with a history of winning super bowls is in charge. Gruden has won over 100 games as an NFL head coach. I couldn’t find Sean McDonough’s record anywhere on the internet, so I really can’t tell you who knows more about football.

  28. In reference to Chuckie: Guys who always believe they’re the smartest guy in the room most often are mistaken.


  29. oakvillechucky says:
    September 3, 2018 at 7:37 am
    No team has ever payed 2 players top QB money .IT would destine the team to mediocrity for 10 years.Great deal for the Raiders!

    37 6 Rate This”

    First off, this isn’t Qb money. It’s “elite defensive player” money, and more in the range of “middling QB” money. Secondly, the total combined cap hit for Oakland would have been roughly 21% of their cap. Six teams spend that much in their top two players. Four of those teams have won a SB, and one more has been to the SB, since Oak last went to the SB. Another six teams are between 20% and 21% of the cap in their too two players, including NE. Finally, Mack’s cap hit this year is 7.47% of the cap. Very manageable.

    So keep believing what the Black Hole is telling you. And while you do that, take a gander at their record for the last twenty years. Might help give you a dose of reality.

  30. No team has ever payed 2 players top QB money .IT would destine the team to mediocrity for 10 years.Great deal for the Raiders!

    Ignorant. Ignorant that the salary cap continues to rise every year, by around 10 million. Think about that. If the cap goes up that same amount the next two years, and there isn’t a good reason to think it wouldn’t, that’s an extra 20 million to spend.

    Anyone who makes the “can’t pay two players big money” comment are actually exactly like Gruden; rooted in the past without any guts or ability to look even slightly into the future.

  31. Mack is a awesome talent but I don’t think he equals Playoff appearances, Division Titles, Conference Titles ect. Ok,one Division Title. The Raiders will definitely get a Top 10 pick from the Bears the next 2 years. I think it worked out pretty good for the Raiders. You just cant have 2 players Taking up that much cap space. Gruden better hit on these picks!!

  32. Sean as boring as ever….but I digress.
    Gruden and the Raiders absolutely made the right long term decision for the team. How many SBs has generational DE JJ Watts played in? And a prime example of why teams can’t overload on D lineman contracts. Quick strike passing offenses can bypass these elite pass rushers while attacking less talented defensive players required on these financially lopsided rosters to compensate for a generational player. This formula may work for a season…but it is not a model for sustained success. Refer to Patriots who sell off every pass rusher when the dollars get ridiculous. The Pats certainly aren’t elite on defense, but their capable and compliment their total team approach that leans on depth created via enormous savings….savings that big spenders never have.

  33. To me this was a smart move for Oakland. Shed the money now. Have back to back dual first round picks leading into Vegas. Then they can start to generate some real money. Gruden is there 10 years. It doesn’t have to be “win now”. The Raisers defense has sucked with Mack on it for several years. It was the right move to me. Plus I am sure Gruden can see that Brady, Ben and Rivers will all retire soon and the AFC will be up for grabs for a long stretch.

  34. Does he not understand that he sounds like an idiot constantly referring to Gruden as Gru-dog and my man Gru-dog? I know it’s worse in print but he should read his own quotes. I’m embarrassed for him.

  35. It doesn’t help the Bears pathetic offense at all. And with a $24 mil cap number Macks contract will handcuff the Bears from adding complimentary pieces to both defense and offense. If he goes down hurt,……….. oh boy !!
    Jay Cutler 2.0.
    Bears fans were jumping up and down talking smack when that deal went down. Ooooops !!

  36. First off, this isn’t Qb money. It’s “elite defensive player” money, and more in the range of “middling QB” money. Secondly, the total combined cap hit for Oakland would have been roughly 21% of their cap. Six teams spend that much in their top two players. Four of those teams have won a SB, and one more has been to the SB, since Oak last went to the SB. Another six teams are between 20% and 21% of the cap in their too two players, including NE. Finally, Mack’s cap hit this year is 7.47% of the cap. Very manageable.

    You obviously are not a mathematician!

  37. Yeah and mcdonough’s brother works with steve keim in arizona.

    If you can’t grasp basic economics , keep your trap shut. the Bears clearly just sunk themselves for years. In 2 years, Trubisky will want 25 mil per or more.

  38. It seems pretty simple to me. They didn’t want to pay one single defensive player hyper-inflated QB money. They’ve already seen that Mack won’t be enough to guarantee postseason success, so why pour more money there?

    When the Bears end up in 3rd or 4th place this year, and Mack’s efforts fail to keep the team relevant or in the spotlight, and the Raiders fare no worse overall, and they pull in to the next draft with a rich pile of picks and much improved cap situation, this will all make more sense.

    No single non-QB player is worth this much money.

  39. To all those whinging about how the salary cap will be going up in the future:

    Yes, it will, and it will have to pay for everyone on the team, all of whose salaries will likely be increasing, as well as the potential multiple first-round signings the Raiders will be making over the next few years.

    This idea that future salary cap increases are just bonus money that could mostly go to Mack is ridiculous.

  40. Is there any media person anywhere that will acknowledge this is just way too much money for a defender?? Bears will never get the value for what they are paying. And now they don’t have a first round pick till 2021! Raiders got the better of this deal.

  41. Not a fan of either so I don’t have any reason to defend either one but this is just petty jealousy from Sean McDonough and he needs to stop. He’s lucky to have a job anywhere. I’ve never heard such an uninteresting monotone announcer in my life. If I was Gruden I wouldn’t work well with that guy either. Talk about a flat line personality.

  42. Media people are celebrity obsessed even in sports. Mack is a good player but he is not a great player. He averages 11 sacks a year. He is otherwise average against the run and he is poor as a cover linebacker. But media is all about taking care of celebrities because they are themselves as celebrities. The Raiders made a smart move to get two ones and not spend quarterback money on a defense pass rush specialist like Mack.

  43. psubeerman21 says:
    September 3, 2018 at 11:29 am

    Ignorant. Ignorant that the salary cap continues to rise every year, by around 10 million. Think about that. If the cap goes up that same amount the next two years, and there isn’t a good reason to think it wouldn’t, that’s an extra 20 million to spend.

    *********************************************************************************

    You assume too much … NFL viewership is down because of the NA protests. The TV contracts will not skyrocket if anything they will stay the same or maybe even go down.

  44. Mack is not a game changer. He averages 11 sacks a game and is otherwise an average linebacker.Just being called a star does not make you actually essential.

  45. Now maybe the trade that Minnesota made (for all they gave up)for Herschel Walker will FINALLY be overshadowed, by this deal (& all the Bears gave up).

  46. hailtothenamechange says:
    September 3, 2018 at 6:52 am
    Broadcasters sound even more ridiculous when you type out their commentary in actual black and white. “Gru-dog?” Get real man.

    **********
    Spot on. Today’s commentary at least on football is no were near as good as the olden days. They all want to be celebs today.

  47. I am glad Gruden is a Coach so I don’t have to hear him or see him. I’ll never watch a Chucky movie the same again!

  48. I guess Gruden wants to build the Raiders his way..so, he doesn’t want to hamstring the team with Mack getting so much money. I agree with paying one player on your team HUGE money, and that is the QB, especially since there have been so many rule changes IN THEIR FAVOR. Good luck Gruden, at least you have a little money and some 1st round draft picks to work with.

  49. I thought Gruden was excellent in the broadcast booth. McDonough was not an NFL guy. He should have been calling tennis.

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