Jon Gruden used a racist stereotype to refer to NFL union boss DeMaurice Smith in 2011, according to a recently discovered email by the Wall Street Journal.
“Dumboriss Smith has lips the size of michellin tires,” Gruden wrote during the NFL lockout in an email to Bruce Allen, then the GM in Washington.
At the time, the 58-year-old Gruden was displeased with the direction that Smith had taken the NFLPA during the lockout and had used the term “rubber lips.”
Gruden has since apologized for the email. “I’m really sorry,” Gruden said, before claiming that he calls liars “rubber lips,” but also that he doesn’t think Smith is a liar.
“I was upset,” 58-year-old Gruden said. “I used a horrible way of explaining it.”
“I don’t think he’s dumb. I don’t think he’s a liar,” he told the Journal. “I don’t have a racial bone in my body, and I’ve proven that for 58 years.”
Also, the league is now looking into possible punishment for his actions.
“The NFL is reviewing Gruden’s status with the Raiders for potential discipline.”
Smith is not so forgiving when he released a statment about the situation.
“This is not the first racist comment that I’ve heard and it probably will not be the last. This is a thick skin job for someone with dark skin, just like it always has been for many people who look like me and work in corporate America. You know people are sometimes saying things behind your back that are racist just like you see people talk and write about you using thinly coded and racist language.
“Racism like this comes from the fact that I’m at the same table as they are and they don’t think someone who looks like me belongs. I’m sorry my family has to see something like this but I would rather they know. I will not let it define me.”
In their statement, the NFL told the WSJ that the email was “appalling, abhorrent.”
Back in 2011, the now-Raiders head coach was an ESPN broadcaster when he sent the email to Allen, who was the Washington GM from 2010-19.WANT MORE FROM TOTALPROSPORTS? FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE NEWS.