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Las Vegas Raiders Players Jump To Defence Of Coach After Racist 2011 Email Emerges

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Las Vegas Raiders Players Jump To Defence Of Coach After Racist 2011 Email Emerges

A bunch of Las Vegas Raiders players have leapt to the defence of head coach Jon Gruden after a 'racist' email from 2011 emerged online.

In the email sent from over a decade ago, Gruden told then-Washington GM Bruce Smith that NFLPA head DeMaurice Smith "has lips the size of Michelin tires".

Jon Gruden. Credit: PA
Jon Gruden. Credit: PA
Derek Carr. Credit: PA
Derek Carr. Credit: PA
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When the racial slur surfaced last week, Gruden was on the receiving end of a fair bit of backlash and has since been forced to issue an apology.

NFL officials were also quick to condemn the veteran Super Bowl-winner, calling his comments "appalling, abhorrent and wholly contrary to the NFL's values".

But while Gruden has held his hands up and accepted his wrongdoing, some of his own players have now spoke out in favour of their coach.

"Us as a team, we're like, 'Yeah, Coach, it was 10 years ago. We love you, man. We got your back,'" Raiders quarterback Derek Carr said.

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"We're just trying to be there to support Coach. I know it's a hard time for him... He told us, 'Men, learn from my mistake.' When we left that meeting, we didn't take it as how it came out."

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Star running back Josh Jacobs echoed his quarterback's remarks.

"I've been around this guy for three years now; I've never felt a certain type of way about him," Jacobs said.

"He's never rubbed me a certain way, that type of way. I mean, what he said is what he said at the end of the day too. But I mean, I definitely trust him. I mean, it was 10 years ago. People grow."

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Despite apologising for his actions and garnering the support of some of his players, Gruden's name is still in the spotlight as a result of the controversial email with a bunch of big-name personalities having their say on the matter.

"All I can say is I'm not a racist," Gruden said.

"I can't tell you how sick I am. I apologise again to De Smith. But I feel good about who I am, what I've done my entire life. And I apologise for the insensitive remarks I had. I had no racial intentions with those remarks at all... I'm not like that at all. But I apologise.

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"I can't remember a lot of the things that transpired 10 or 12 years ago, but I stand here in front of everybody apologising. I don't have an ounce of racism in me. I'm a guy that takes pride in leading people together. And I'll continue to do that the rest of my life. And, again, I apologise to De Smith and anybody out there I have offended."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: American Football, Racism, NFL, Australia

Max Sherry
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