Former Raiders coach Jon Gruden was present during New Orleans' organized team activities last week, Saints head coach Dennis Allen confirmed to reporters on Tuesday.
Gruden has not coached since he resigned from his position with the Raiders in October 2021 after he was revealed to have used racist, homophobic and misogynistic terms in emails dating back to 2010. He has not been involved in the NFL since.
"Obviously, Jon's a guy that has a lot of experience with Derek (Carr) and Derek has had his most success under Jon Gruden," Allen told reporters, via ESPN's Katherine Terrell. "And so, we felt like bringing him in, having a chance to sit down and visit with him as an offensive staff, with the quarterbacks and just getting some new thoughts and ideas of things we might be able to implement."
Gruden attended practice along with several active college coaches, per multiple reports, and Allen said Tuesday that bringing in Gruden could help the offense brainstorm how to operate with Carr, who played over three seasons with the coach before Gruden resigned.
"I would say this, I would say, offensively for a long time that I've been here, we've been pretty effective," Allen added. "So, I don't see us putting in a whole new offense or doing something dramatic. But if there's a few ideas that we could take from that, we felt like that would be beneficial."
Shortly after he resigned from the Raiders, Gruden filed a lawsuit against the NFL and Commissioner Roger Goodell, alleging they sought to ruin his career by releasing private emails. In January of this year, the Nevada State Supreme Court granted the league's motion to pause Gruden's lawsuit.
Allen was asked whether he was concerned Gruden's presence could be a distraction or would inspire backlash.
"No, look, you ask everybody that was involved and they thought it was really beneficial for our football team," Allen said, via ESPN. "And look, we're going to look at any avenue that we can to try to improve. So that was one area we thought, just bringing him in and having the opportunity to sit down and visit with him, would help us."
In three-plus years under Gruden, Carr completed 68.3% of his passes for 13,811 yards, 75 touchdowns and 31 interceptions and led the Raiders to a 22-31 record. The quarterback was released this offseason after one full season in a new Las Vegas regime, and Carr subsequently signed with New Orleans.
The Saints had three days of voluntary workouts last week and have two more this week with four more next week before mandatory minicamp kicks off June 13.