Jon Gruden emails weren’t him as a person

Devontae Booker played last season for Jon Gruden. So how did he feel about Gruden losing his job as Raiders coach for his homophobic and misogynistic emails uncovered by the New York Times?

“I don’t know, honestly. I heard it and I just felt like I don’t think that was him, just me personally,” Booker said. “I don’t think that was him as a person and everything. I was only there with him a year, but that’s just my take on it. Everybody else can do whatever or say whatever about him, but I didn’t get that from him when I was there.”

Booker said he enjoyed playing for Gruden, after four seasons in Denver.

“Absolutely. He gave me an opportunity there,” Booker said. “I probably wouldn’t be here right now without the opportunity he gave me.”

Advertisement

He signed a two-year, $5.5 million contract with the Giants to be an insurance policy for Saquon Barkley (knee). When Barkley sprained his ankle against the Cowboys, Booker (16-42 rushing, 3-16-1 receiving with two combined touchdowns) replaced him. Booker will start Sunday against the Rams.

Devontae Booker appreciated the opportunity he got from Jon Gruden.
Corey Sipkin; Getty Images (inset)

“Even if he wasn’t in this situation right now, I would go out there and be prepared for my opportunities and help do whatever I can to help this team win,” he said.

Advertisement

Booker said he hadn’t spoken to any of his former Raiders teammates. He expressed no surprise or disappointment that he couldn’t play another year for Gruden.

“Not at all. Like I said, at the end of the day it’s a business, and I had to come here,” he said.

Advertisement