Former Buccaneers and Raiders coach Jon Gruden has kept a low profile for nearly 11 months. He no longer is.
Appearing, for some reason, at the Little Rock Touchdown Club, Gruden addressed the circumstances that ended his coaching career, while also making it clear he wants to coach again.
“I’m not going to say anything but honest things here,” Gruden said. “I’m ashamed about what has come about in these emails. And 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. And I just ask for forgiveness, and hopefully I get another shot.”
Question: Has anyone ever confessed publicly to being a bad person? Or would even the worst of the bad still tell the world they are good? Also, if simply going to church and/or avoiding divorce for 31 years is any sort of good-person litmus test, heaven may be a lot more crowded than expected.
Gruden also commented on the media. Specifically, he took a shot at the four-letter network that paid him a high-seven figure salary for nearly 10 years.
“There’s a lot of misunderstanding out there right now,” Gruden said. “What you read. What you hear. What you watch on TV. Hell, I worked at ESPN for nine years. I worked hard at that job. I don’t even wanna watch the channel anymore. Because I don’t believe everything is true. And I know a lot of it is just trying to get people to watch.”
Though he didn’t use the “W” word, Gruden was clearly in that ballpark. Whether he’ll ever be back on the sidelines of a football stadium remains to be seen. College, if he’s willing to deal with kids that young and inexperienced, is possible.
The NFL remains a pipe dream, especially after he sued both the league and its Commissioner for leaking the emails that forced him out of the league. Also, he didn’t exactly thrive in three-plus seasons back with the Raiders after a nine-year break.