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Jon Gruden sues NFL, Roger Goodell for forcing his resignation from Raiders

Gruden is accusing the league of “selectively leaking” the emails he sent to former Washington Football Team president Bruce Allen.

Jon Gruden Getty Images

Jon Gruden, former head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, has filed a lawsuit against the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell a month after he resigned for using racist, misogynistic and homophobic language in leaked emails.

On Friday (Nov. 12), Gruden filed the suit in the Eighth Judicial District Court in Clark County, Nevada, accusing the league of “selectively leaking” the emails he sent to former Washington Football Team president Bruce Allen. “There is no explanation or justification for why Gruden’s emails were the only ones made public out of the 650,000 emails collected in the NFL’s investigation of the Washington Football Team or for why the emails were held for months before being released in the middle of the Raiders’ season,” Adam Hosmer-Henner, Gruden’s lawyer, said in a statement.

The NFL has since denied those accusations. “The allegations are entirely meritless and the NFL will vigorously defend against these claims,” lesgue spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a statement on Friday.

Last month, Gruden resigned from his position as the head coach of the Raiders after the emails went public. In one message that was sent back in 2011, he compared the lips of DeMaurice Smith, the executive director of the NFL Players Association, to tires.

The coach later issued an apology, saying that he calls liars “rubber lips,” but doesn’t think Smith is one. “I don’t think he’s dumb. I don’t think he’s a liar,” he told the Wall Street Journal. “I don’t have a racial bone in my body, and I’ve proven that for 58 years.”

Gruden also wrote that players should be terminated for kneeling during the national anthem and he responded to a meme of a female referee with “nice job Roger.”

A day after his resignation, Skechers dropped Gruden as an ambassador for the brand. “We believe taking a stand against racist or derogatory comments and for inclusion of all is imperative,” Jennifer Clay, Skechers vice president of corporate communications and marketing, said in a statement.

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