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Monday, August 20, 2018

Jon Gruden says he will not have ownership stake in Raiders

Jon Gruden

Jon Gruden will likely be one of the highest-paid coaches in football if and when he is hired by the Oakland Raiders, but some of the reports about the offer the team has made him have apparently been exaggerated.

NFL reporters Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen, who work for ESPN just like Gruden, said last week that the Raiders were prepared to offer Gruden an ownership stake in the team to entice him to return to coaching. Apparently they didn’t need to do that to make Gruden want the job, as he told “Golic and Wingo” on Wednesday that there’s absolutely no truth to that report.

“There’s no truth to that at all,” Gruden said. “I heard Stephen Smith screaming at me on TV yesterday on one of his shows. There’s no validity to that at all — none, zero. No ownership, that’s for sure.”

Smith said Tuesday that Gruden has not done enough to deserve an ownership stake in an NFL franchise, noting that even Bill Belichick does not have one with the New England Patriots after winning five Super Bowls with the organization.

As he did earlier in the week, Gruden all but confirmed that he will be coaching the Raiders in 2018.

“I think there’s a good chance,” he said. “I’m excited about where I am in terms of studying the game and prepared to come back and coach. I just don’t want to sit here and speculate. I don’t know what’s gonna happen. … I did have a good meeting with Mark (Davis). I’ve known him a long time and I’ve got a lot of respect for the Raider football organization.”

The only reason the Raiders are waiting to formally hire Gruden is so they don’t violate the Rooney Rule. Gruden is also still under contract with ESPN and wants to honor his commitment through the NFL playoffs.

Gruden has already been working on assembling a coaching staff, and one Raiders fan favorite could be joining him on the sideline next season. The Raiders would not have fired Jack Del Rio if a deal with Gruden wasn’t in place.

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