Gruden resigned on Monday after stories emerged of him utilizing homophobic, racist and misogynistic language in emails whereas he labored as an ESPN analyst.
Russell, who got here out as bisexual in 2019 and who performed for the Dallas Cowboys and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, instructed CNN’s New Day that he was heartbroken when he heard concerning the emails and mentioned resignation was the naked minimal the league ought to settle for.
“I do not assume it is sufficient, I feel it is reactive of the investigation of what’s taking place,” Russell mentioned Tuesday.
“I feel the subsequent step that the league must take is being proactive in ensuring that the coaches that they rent, the gamers that they draft, the group that they type are being inclusive, are being supportive and are held to that normal not when issues come to gentle however on a regular basis.
“That is accountability, doing the correct factor when nobody is wanting. The integrity stage is what’s being challenged right here.”
Critics had known as for Gruden, who has coached the Raiders for the reason that starting of the 2018 season, to be fired since The Wall Avenue Journal reported he used racially insensitive language to explain NFL Gamers Affiliation govt director DeMaurice Smith in a 2011 e-mail.
On Monday, the New York Occasions reported it reviewed extra emails and located Gruden denounced ladies being employed as on-field officers, a workforce drafting an brazenly homosexual participant and the tolerance for nationwide anthem protesters.
The Occasions mentioned the emails had been despatched to Bruce Allen, the previous president of the Washington Soccer Crew, over a seven-year interval, inflicting many to query why he was allowed to remain in his function for thus lengthy. Allen was fired by the group in December 2019.
On Friday, an NFL spokesperson mentioned the e-mail reported within the Wall Avenue Journal was unearthed as a part of an NFL assessment of office misconduct on the Washington Soccer Crew that befell this summer season.
CNN has reached out once more to Gruden, the NFL and the Raiders for remark.
‘That is not acceptable’
“Jon Gruden wasn’t sending these emails to himself, there have been different people who knew about it,” Russell added.
“There have been different people who had been concerned throughout the league and this went unchecked for years so no, resigning just isn’t accountability, it isn’t sufficient — it is one thing reactive.”
The Raiders launched an announcement by which Gruden introduced his resignation, saying: “I am sorry, I by no means meant to harm anybody.”
The assertion has been criticized for not addressing all of the matters that Gruden had lined within the emails.
“To say he did not imply to harm anybody, that is not acceptable,” Russell mentioned.
“You already know, at the moment, what these phrases imply, what that claims to your character, what that claims to your group and what that can do to your legacy.
“You damage folks, you damage actually everybody, and there’s no assertion that you may put out that can take that again.”
‘Uncover the true ideas of Jon Gruden’
“How would Jon Gruden, after sending that homophobic e-mail, with gamers figuring out that is what he actually thinks, how would he rise up in the midst of the room and lead this group of males with a number of folks in that locker room figuring out that, privately, he makes enjoyable of them or is towards them?” Rapoport mentioned.
“It couldn’t work. That partially explains why Jon Gruden resigned to proprietor Mark Davis after which to his employees final night time.”
Rapoport says hundreds of emails from the investigation have but to be made public and is not sure who else might be caught up in an identical scenario.
“The report has not been made public. Most of those emails haven’t been made public,” he mentioned.
“Are they going to be or are we going to seek out out the key contents of leaders’ emails that comply with this sample?”
Given the work the league has finished to be extra inclusive lately, Rapoport says many in the neighborhood are simply relieved Gruden has determined to resign from his function.
“This can be a man, who publicly was one factor — he gave the impression to be a sort of jovial, kooky chief — these emails clearly uncover the true ideas of Jon Gruden,” he mentioned.
“I feel there are lots of people questioning — gamers, executives of colour, many whom I spoke to final night time, coaches of colour, or simply people — simply questioning if this particular person goes to get what he deserves.
“Is there going to be accountability? Are you simply allowed to do that?
“I feel when John Gurden resigned, a number of of the folks I spoke with merely mentioned, ‘OK good, that is what it must be.'”
CNN’s Steve Almasy contributed reporting.