Dallas Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy didn’t mince words when asked to comment on long-time NFL coach Jon Gruden’s forced resignation from the Las Vegas Raiders after it was revealed he made racist, homophobic and misogynistic comments towards other NFL executives in emails over the last decade.
McCarthy called the situation disappointing and unfortunate.
“I think first of all I think it’s a reminder that we all need to treat each other better,” McCarthy said. “I think it’s a very disappointing situation where people are offended, a number of people also affected. I also as a position of leadership in this league and society, it comes with a lot of very high level of accountability. That’s something that’s a privilege and that’s something that we all recognized. It’s disappointing, very unfortunate.”
McCarthy also has no sympathy for the narrative about the changing of the work place environment. He acknowledged there has been education involved since he came into the league in 1993.
But he said it’s still about treating people with respect and common decency, while calling it “a very disappointing situation that we can learn from.”
“I just think it comes down to common respect,” McCarthy said. “You have to be aware. Your thoughts and your words, they matter. It reflects your position and what you’re trying to get done. When you talk about culture and workplace, you want the positive energy and the environment to thrive so everybody can be the best they can be. It frankly goes back to my first statement. We need to treat each other better.”
Gruden resigned Monday night in the wake of a report revealing racist, misogynistic and homophobic language in emails sent from 2011 through 2018 to former Washington Football Team executive Bruce Allen.
The NFL obtained the emails as part of an investigation into the workplace culture of the Washington Football Team.
A person familiar with the decision told the Associated Press that Gruden stepped down after The New York Times reported that he frequently used misogynistic and homophobic language directed at commissioner Roger Goodell and others in the NFL.
McCarthy’s comments echoed those of Cowboys owner Jerry Jones in terms of everyone having to be accountable for their actions.
“I know we all are accountable to even a, if you will, fleeting or minor part of our actions,” Jones said. We all are accountable to those.”
In addition to resigning from the Raiders, Gruden has been removed from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Ring of Honor.
He led the Buccaneers to the franchise’s first Super Bowl title in the 2002 season, beating the then-Oakland Raiders, but has now been removed from the team’s ring of honor membership.
“The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have advocated for purposeful change in the areas of race relations, gender equality, diversity and inclusion for many years,” the team said in a statement. “While we acknowledge Jon Gruden’s contributions on the field, his actions go against our core values as an organization. Therefore, he will no longer continue to be a member of the Buccaneers Ring of Honor.”