The NFL has found that no other current team or league personnel has sent emails containing racist, homophobic or misogynistic language similar to messages written by Jon Gruden that led to his resignation as Raiders coach, the Associated Press reported Friday.
The league “did not identify other areas and other individuals it has to contact at club leadership or league leadership levels,” the report said, citing a person familiar with the investigation and the emails.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the league has not publicly released what is in the 650,000 emails the independent investigators collected during a probe of sexual harassment and other workplace conditions at the Washington Football Team.
Confidentiality has been cited by the NFL and by the investigating firm in the Washington case for not publicly releasing specifics. The majority of those who participated in the investigation were promised they would remain anonymous.
Gruden resigned Monday as Raiders coach after reports surfaced of the denigrating comments expressed in emails written from 2011-18 to then-Washington president Bruce Allen. The Super Bowl-winning Bucs coach was not in the NFL during those years; he was an analyst for ESPN.
The NFL has categorized comparisons of Gruden’s correspondence with Allen to that between Allen and top league lawyer Jeff Pash as a mischaracterization, the Associated Press reported.
Pash has been a conduit between the NFL office and teams for years.
The New York Times, reporting on emails between Allen and Pash, said that in one email, Allen, referring to the NFL rule that requires teams to interview minority candidates for coaching and executive jobs, wrote, “We have the Rooney rule … So I’m gong to propose a Lincoln Rule at the next meeting.”
As Allen’s team spun in and out of crisis, Allen and Pash joked about the league’s diversity initiatives, The New York Times said. When Allen shared an audio file of a team song aimed at attracting Latino fans, Pash responded, “I am not sure this song will be as popular after the wall gets built.”
The league said Pash discussed a number of topics with Allen in emails but it found those emails “in a different category” as a part of Pash’s job, and “appropriate,” the Associated Press reported, citing the person with knowledge of the emails and the investigation.
The league said Pash had not been “too chummy” with Allen, nor was there anything that “led to any sort of undue influence that resulted in any gains by the Washington Football Team,” the report said.
Washington was docked $36 million in salary-cap room in 2012 and ‘13 by the league, with Pash heavily involved in the investigation leading to that discipline.
NFL Players Association chief DeMaurice Smith again called for the league to release every email from the investigation.
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”Our players deserve a full accounting of any other NFL misconduct,” he said on Twitter, adding “any evidence or knowledge that this has been suppressed must be brought to light.”
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