Gruden disciple says there’s room for the coach to receive a second chance

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First-year defensive coordinator for the Rams, Raheem Morris, is another coach speaking out on the Jon Gruden email controversy. Morris coached under Gruden as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ defensive quality control coach for the Super Bowl-winning 2002 unit.

Following Thursday’s practice, Morris shared his thoughts on the emails that led to Gruden’s resignation, condemning the messaging but also adding some grace for his former mentor.

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Defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, on the sidelines during a 34-14 win over the Chicago Bears at SoFi Stadium on September 12, 2021 in Inglewood, California.

Defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, on the sidelines during a 34-14 win over the Chicago Bears at SoFi Stadium on September 12, 2021 in Inglewood, California.
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

“It doesn’t excuse the behavior, it doesn’t excuse the … poor judgment,” Morris said. “However you want to put it. It does not excuse those things.”

Morris contextualized his sentiments by adding that the diversity of the League should demand better judgement by the head coach. “But you do know you can’t say those things,” Morris added, “and those things are frowned upon in almost every environment. You’ve got to find out you’ve got to really dig deep to find out whether you’re sorry that you got caught or you’re sorry that you said those things truly.”

With Rams head coach Sean McVay also coming from the Gruden lineage of coaches, Morris spoke on the mutual sentiment regarding those in the NFL that personally know Gruden, and those waiting to ostracize him purely on the content of the emails.

Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden, left, speaks with an official during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Seattle Seahawks, Saturday, Aug. 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. 

Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden, left, speaks with an official during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Seattle Seahawks, Saturday, Aug. 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. 
(AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)

“You know the people that do know him, and the people that know him well … for us it would have to be him searching out some of the help or some of the people that he has to talk to search for that type of forgiveness,” Morris claimed.

In his response, Morris mentioned that conversations should be frank regarding the content of the emails and that a path back to the NFL should not be closed off for Gruden after one offense.

Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden talks with quarterback Derek Carr (4) during the second half against the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium.

Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden talks with quarterback Derek Carr (4) during the second half against the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium.
(Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports)

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“It’s just more of the uncomfortable conversation that people are not comfortable having. … There’s people that walk in my shoes that are comfortable having it. … I’m very comfortable having these conversations with just about anybody.”

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