Ismail on WFT email scandal: 'Absolute power corrupts absolutely'


The NFL Players Association, led by DeMaurice Smith, said on Tuesday that it plans to ask the league to release all emails reviewed during the investigation into workplace misconduct with the Washington Football Team. This request comes days after leaked investigation emails revealed that Jon Gruden used racist, homophobic, and misogynistic language.

According to multiple reports, the league has no intention of releasing the remainder of the 650,000 emails obtained, due to confidentiality reasons. And this news isn't the least bit surprising to former NFL wide receiver and current Baltimore Ravens analyst Qadry Ismail.

"The people in New York in the league office, they do an extremely good job of marketing and a great job of spinning everything," Ismail told The DA Show on Wednesday. "That's just what they do, and they do it well. But, those of us who know what kind of organization, and it starts at the top with [WFT owner] Dan Snyder, I've heard for years some of the major dysfunction that went on.

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"Absolute power corrupts absolutely, and that's what goes on. You have some powerful people who think they can do whatever they want to do, however they want to do it. And when that darkness gets shined in the light, people now, all of the sudden, recognize who you really are."

Last week, The Wall Street Journal reported that, in a 2011 email, Gruden used a racial trope to criticize Smith, who was named NFLPA executive director in 2009. According to The New York Times, his emails also featured a vulgar criticism of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, and revealed that Gruden denounced the drafting of a gay player, the tolerance of players protesting during the national anthem, and the hiring of women as on-field officials. Gruden resigned as Las Vegas Raiders head coach on Monday night.

Many of Gruden's emails -- sent across a seven-year period ending in 2018 -- were forwarded to Bruce Allen, who was fired as Washington's team president back in 2019. The NFL completed its investigation into workplace misconduct with Washington in July, and fined the franchise $10 million. Dan Snyder also ceded the team's day-to-day operations to his wife, and all senior executives were ordered to participate in workplace conduct training.

The entire NFL conversation between Ismail and DA can be accessed in the audio player above.

You can follow The DA Show on Twitter @DAonCBS and @CBSSportsRadio, and Tom Hanslin @TomHanslin.