In a case of art imitating life, former Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden will be scrubbed from the game Madden NFL 22.
The nature of his emails contradicted the NFL’s attempts to appeal to LGBTQ people, particularly after Raiders’ defensive end Carl Nassib came out in June, making him the league’s first openly gay active player.
EA Sports, which develops and publishes Madden NFL, said it plans to replace Gruden with a “generic likeness” through a “title update in the coming weeks.”
“EA Sports i[s] committed to taking action in maintaining a culture of inclusion and equity,” the company said in a statement on Wednesday. “Due to the circumstances of Jon Gruden’s resignation, we are taking steps to remove him from Madden NFL 22.”
Released on Aug. 20, Madden NFL 22 is the latest installment of a long-running American football video game series. Throughout the game, Madden NFL frequently cuts to head coaches, who are also part of the game’s setup process.
Gruden’s removal will not be the first time a major sports figure has been removed from a game. Last month, EA removed Manchester City defender Benjamin Mendy from soccer game FIFA 22 after the player was charged with rape and sexual assault.
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