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Gruden’s vulgar emails cc’d Tampa leaders

Former Tampa Bay Bucs head coach Jon Gruden quit Monday as head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders after the New York Times reported on racist, sexist and homophobic language he used in emails shortly after leaving the Bucs in 2009 with a Super Bowl ring.

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The intrigue: The emails were discovered in a workplace misconduct investigation into the Washington Football Team and include the coach’s correspondence with Tampa Bay-area businessmen.

  • In the exchanges, the New York Times reported, Gruden mostly traded vulgar comments with Bruce Allen, a longtime friend and pro football executive.

Yes, but: Some emails included local businessmen, including:

  • Ed Droste, Hooters co-founder.
  • Jim McVay, president and CEO of the Outback Bowl.
  • Nick Reader, founder of Tampa-based PDQ Restaurants.
  • In one 2015 email that copied Droste and McVay, Gruden crudely asked Allen to tell Bucs owner Bryan Glazer to perform oral sex on him.

Go deeper: In the emails, Gruden made racist remarks about a Black man’s physical appearance, denounced the drafting of a gay NFL player, criticized the league for hiring female refs, and bashed players protesting during the playing of the national anthem.

What they’re saying: “I love the Raiders and do not want to be a distraction,” Gruden wrote in his resignation statement. “I’m sorry, I never meant to hurt anyone.”

Droste, McVay, and Reader did not respond to the Times’ requests for comment.

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