Jon Gruden’s name is the mythical white whale that surfaces every time there’s a major college or NFL coaching vacancy. To this point Gruden has been content to to stay in the Monday Night Football booth and haul in north of $6 mil a year, but in an interview with the Buccaneers blog, Pewter Report, Gruden went on the record and stated he wants to make a coaching comeback.
Gruden has maintained an extremely close connection to the game since he last coached in 2008. He still watches film before the crack of dawn everyday, runs his quarterback draft workouts, and attends practices, but he says he’s not just doing it for kicks. He wants to return to the sidelines.
“I’ve met with several people, I won’t deny that.
People, just about every year I talk about coming back to coach. I’m not in here every day at 4:30 or 4:00 in the morning watching pinball. You know?
I’m preparing myself to come back. I am. Every day. I’m preparing to come back.”
Gruden said he would want to return to the NFL because he couldn’t handle the limited practice time and all the NCAA rules that come with a college job. After spending time with Nick Saban and Chip Kelly after getting fired in Tampa, he concluded he would be a walking NCAA violation. He’s hardwired to be an NFL guy.
Too many rules, man. I mean I like to work. I don’t like to be working 15 hours a week with players.
The recruiting, Facebook, texting, e-mails – all that stuff. Yeah, I’d probably have you in real deep, deep trouble if I was your college coach.”
Gruden didn’t set a timetable for his return, but just to actually hear him say, publicly, that he intends to coach again is a revelation in itself. This certainly won’t make his name appear any less in upcoming coaching rumors. He knows that. It’s hard to imagine him saying it if he wasn’t considering making the jump sooner than later.
“I’m very happy with what I’m doing. I haven’t lost the itch, though. I miss the players. I won’t deny that.
I don’t want to start anything, but I say the same thing to everybody. There are very few passions in my life. The man upstairs, family and football.”
Jon Gruden? Returning to the N-F-L? I’m telling you what, man.
Here’s oldie but goodie of Gruden being Gruden at Bucs training camp. He loves football, man.