THOUSAND OAKS — Los Angeles Rams coach Sean McVay and former Las Vegas Raiders coach Jon Gruden spent time coaching together on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' staff in 2008. The McVay and Gruden family bond is well documented, traced from their experiences with one another throughout the game of football.
Following multiple reports that revealed past emails sent by Gruden – found in an investigation of the Washington Football Team – the former Raiders coach had used racial, homophobic and misogynistic language toward individuals, resulting in Gruden to resign from the team Monday night.
On Wednesday, McVay was asked about the situation given his experience in knowing Gruden on a coaching and personal level. McVay gave his thoughts toward the incident, showing sympathy to those impacted.
"It's a really unfortunate situation that's gone on with the Raiders and coach Gruden," McVay said to open up his Wednesday press conference. "I hate that so many people have been negatively affected by this. Thoughts and prayers are with all those people that are."
McVay said when he first became aware of the email scandal involving Gruden that he was surprised, as he went on to describe the person-to-person interactions he had with the former Raiders coach.
"It did," McVay said when asked if this surprised him. "I can only speak on my individual interactions with him, haven't seen any of those types of things. We are responsible for things that we do say. I have not seen that side of him and I was surprised by that."
Gruden hired McVay, giving him his first coaching job in the NFL when he served as the wide receivers coach in Tampa Bay over a decade ago. Two years later, McVay moved over to an offensive assistant role in Washington under Jon's brother, Jay Gruden.
In doing so, McVay has spent time on staff there in Washington, the franchise that's currently in the middle of an ongoing investigation. McVay said Wednesday that the league has not contacted him in part of the investigation.
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"I'm sad for the many people that have been negatively affected," McVay said, showing compassion. "Anybody that was offended by this. There's a lot of things that go into this and a lot of people that have been affected and that's what I'm sad about. It's kind of a sad commentary all around and it's an unfortunate thing that we're even talking about it right now."
McVay did mention he was aware that his uncle, Jim McVay, was copied on the emails sent by Gruden, obtained by the New York Times.
"I saw that my uncle was on some of those chains, but I can't speak on behalf of some of the content but saddened is an appropriate word," McVay said.
McVay reiterated during his time with the media on Wednesday that he tries to keep an open and honest communication with players and will continue to do so moving forward.
"I like to believe that people are innately good," McVay said. "There's mistakes that people make, that I've made, nobody's perfect. I think there is something to be said for mercy, for grace, for forgiveness. I've been raised to love people, care about people, came from a great situation where my family taught me right from wrong. I haven't always been perfect but I do think with the platform that I'm so fortunate and blessed to be able to have, it's about bringing people together, building people up, helping them maximize their highest potential but also be the best person they can possibly be and that's something I'm committed to try and do and that's what we'll always try an do here."
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Nick Cothrel is the Publisher of Ram Digest. Follow Nick on Twitter @NickCothrel.