Jon Gruden resigned as the Raiders' coach this week amid reports of rampant homophobic and misogynistic language in email communications. And Gruden was right to step down, according to reigning NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers. Joining the "Pat McAfee Show" on Tuesday, the Packers quarterback said the coach resigning was "probably the best decision for all parties," adding that the strong opinions expressed in Gruden's reported emails -- regarding everything from female referees to gay NFL players -- "don't have a place in the game."
"We have to leave space for people to grow and change and better themselves," Rodgers told McAfee. "But I think there are opinions that just don't belong in the game. I can say with real honesty and pride that I don't feel like those (are) opinions that are shared by players. I feel like, in the locker room, it's a close-knit group of guys, and we don't treat people differently by the way they talk, where they're from, what they're into, what they look like, and I'm proud of that. I know that there's probably opinions similar to that," he added, referencing Gruden's emails, "but I feel like they're few and far between."
Among Gruden's reported emails, which spanned from 2010 to 2018, the year he rejoined the Raiders on a 10-year contract, were comments alleging wrongful NFL pressure on the Rams to draft "queers" (an allusion to Michael Sam, an openly gay pass rusher drafted by St. Louis in 2014), profane criticisms of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and NFLPA executive DeMaurice Smith, as well as apparent endorsements of sexist memes aimed at female officials.
"Again, I think that we need to allow people to grow and change," Rodgers said, "but those opinions don't have a place in the game. It was surprising to see (Gruden's resignation came) so quickly, but I think that was probably the best decision for all parties involved. Hopefully it puts people on notice, like, 'Hey man, it's time to grow and evolve and change and connect, and that s--- doesn't fly."