Jack Del Rio was critical when asked about the emails from former Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden that led to his resignation.
The Washington Football Team defensive coordinator was asked his opinion on the situation on Thursday and called Gruden's actions "shocking" and "embarrassingly bad."
"It was, I guess, shocking," Del Rio said. "Embarrassingly bad for a person in that position to have those kinds of thoughts and to express them like that. I don't have much respect for it.”
Gruden resigned from his position on Monday after racist, sexist and transphobic emails he sent years ago became public this past weekend. The emails became public as part of Beth Wilkinson's investigation into the Washington Football Team's workplace culture, as former team president Bruce Allen was among the recipients of Gruden's messages.
Del Rio was later asked if he thought Gruden's emails were an example of a broader problem in the NFL, where he responded by saying that has not been his experience.
"That's not been my experience. I grew up in a melting pot area. It's kind of how I've lived my life: respecting and love each other. We're football players and coaches," Del Rio said.
"We're working together with all types of different people from different walks of life and it's about the man within, has nothing to do with anything else. That's always kind of been my approach. That's always the way I've worked at it and that's been my experience for the most part in this league.”
Del Rio and Gruden have never coached on the same staff, but the former was replaced by the latter as head coach of the Raiders in 2018. Del Rio served as the then-Oakland Raiders head coach from 2015-17, finishing with a 23-25 record and one playoff appearance.
In 2019, Del Rio said that while he was still the coach of the Raiders, owner Mark Davis would openly tell him that he'd move on from Del Rio for Gruden if he had the chance.
“He was always very straightforward with the fact that he was in love with Jon, and if he had the chance, he was going to hire him,” Del Rio said. “He said it every chance he got.”