Jon Gruden’s potential bias when covering his brother’s Redskins team for ESPN’s “Monday Night Football” has been an issue since the day Jay was hired.
“I’m going to treat it as professionally as I can,” Jon Gruden said in January.
“If we have the Redskins, he will call the games,” ESPN said in a statement then. “We will be transparent about their relationship. Jon is a professional and will call the games objectively.”
Still, fans from every other team will obsess over Jon’s every word during Redskins games. (Washington has two October “Monday Night Football” dates; on the 6th at home against Seattle, and on the 27th in Dallas.) And if particularly angry people find any comments to particularly harp on, I’m guessing they will simultaneously point to Jon Gruden wearing a Redskins visor during Redskins organized team activities in Ashburn.
He wore the visor while fist-bumping Jay Gruden, and he wore it while talking to Bruce Allen, and he wore it while talking to the media on Wednesday.
“I’m just trying to take care of my job,” Jon Gruden said, via Jones and Maske. “I’ve already been fired. I’m just trying to hang on to the job I can and I know he’s trying to do the same.”
“It won’t make the Seahawks or Cowboys feel comfortable with giving Jon Gruden access to practice and coaches and players as those teams prepare to face Washington on ESPN’s ‘Monday Night Football’ in 2014,” wrote Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio, who has been the loudest voice on this issue. Florio pointed to this line, from CSN Washington:
Robert Griffin III said Jon Gruden was in the team meeting earlier Wednesday and that he expects to see “our fair share of Jon here” this season.
It’s certainly a bit different, anyhow. But Redskins fans have mostly reacted happily to Wednesday’s visit, figuring two well regarded coaches are better than one.