Chargers coach Brandon Staley on Jon Gruden's reported emails: 'It's a sacred mantle for someone to call you coach'

·1 min read

The New York Times report on Jon Gruden's emails has prompted reaction from across the NFL.

Aaron Rodgers declared "those opinions don't have a place in the game." Keyshawn Johnson called Gruden a "fraud" and "a used-car salesman." Randy Moss was brought to tears by the reported emails that showed repeated use of racist, anti-gay and misogynistic language.

Most of the response has come from players or ex-players.

On Wednesday, Los Angeles Chargers coach Brandon Staley weighed in on his now ex-AFC West rival. He spoke candidly and at length on his thoughts. 

"I think that respect and trust in this world are really, really difficult to achieve, and I think about all the people that were affected by those emails," Staley said. "Whether you're a person of color, whether, you know, a gender, your sexual orientation. The people that were affected by those emails, that's who I'm thinking about. 

"Because it's a sacred mantle for someone to call you a coach or call you a leader."

Staley's response was the exception in a league where coaches tend to be reticent concerning non-football topics, especially one concerning a now ex-colleague. He's certainly standing out in more ways than one during his debut season as an NFL head coach.

Los Angeles Chargers head coach Brandon Staley enters the field before an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns Sunday, Oct. 10, 2021, in Inglewood, Calif. (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)
Los Angeles Chargers head coach Brandon Staley enters the field before an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns Sunday, Oct. 10, 2021, in Inglewood, Calif. (AP Photo/Kyusung Gong)
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