Jon Gruden is a loyal man, if anything.
He coached the Raiders from 1998-2001 before being traded (like a player) to the Buccaneers. The irony is unmistakable: Raiders trade Gruden to Tampa, Tampa beats the Raiders that same season in the Super Bowl.
Not many people get the pleasure of sticking it to their former employer so thoroughly, but Chucky did it with an evil smile. Gruden didn’t hold a grudge against Al Davis and now coaches the Las Vegas Raiders since they were in Oakland in 2018. Gruden is slowly returning the Raiders to NFL relevance, but it’s a difficult road ahead.
Like I said — Jon Gruden is a loyal man, if anything.
Gruden wasn’t always in the NFL. There was a time when he was just another kid rocking jean shorts in Clearwater. In 1983, 20-year-old Gruden just needed a job. He didn’t need a career; just something to pay the bills.
His old high school buddies told him about a new wings place down the street that might need a fry cook. Convinced he could drop chicken into a hot vat, Chucky applied for the gig. In 1983, Jon Gruden became a fry cook at the very first Hooters.
That’s right — the very first Hooters. It’s an organization Gruden remains loyal to today.
From 2012-2013, when Gruden was a retired former coach, he gave back to the infamous wings chain by appearing in a series of commercials. Some were directed by Jody Hill, a comedy director coming off of the wonderful Eastbound and Down. The resulting Hooters ads range from uncomfortable to hilarious.
If you want to see them all you’ve come to the right place. This is the Top 5 Jon Gruden Hooters TV Commercials. But first, some honorable mentions:
Honorable Mention: Jon Gruden Hooters Training Video
Not exactly a commercial, more like bonus content for, uh… “wing lovers” out there. Why would a Hooters waitress need to run a tire drill with a full beer?
You know why. Don’t make me say it.
It’s the same reason the camera pauses for a three-second shot of the tightly-clad waitresses in a three-point stance. For the love of football, baby.
Honorable Mention: Jon Gruden Grills Joey Chestnut
This is more of a (not quite) viral video than a commercial, therefore an H.M. It’s worth the watch if only to see Chestnut attempting to eat wings while doing push-ups.
Honorable Mention: Corona Extra Gruden Hotline
Okay, so technically (definitely) not a Hooters commercial, but these Gruden Hotline bits are funny nonetheless. On the whole, I think the Corona campaign was more successful than the Hooters ads, but that’s just the opinion of one guy who’s watched them all six times apiece.
Without further ado, The Top 5 Jon Gruden Hooters TV Commercials.
5. Hoot Camp – Pour
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Part of the ad series parodied Gruden’s ESPN Monday Night Football segment, “Jon Gruden’s QB Camp”.
In the bit, Gruden grills upcoming first-round NFL Draft QBs.
The Hooters parody is largely successful as the set looks identical and Gruden almost nails his demeanor. The Hooters Girl is a bit stiff, but the ad is less shameful than the training video.
4. Hooters Fantasy Football Challenge
What kind of nerd brings a laptop to Hooters? What the hoot is he even doing on there — scrolling through Playboy interviews?
I like this one because it’s too complicated. At first, everything seems normal. Then Jon Gruden is on a commercial within the commercial, then the waitress becomes Jon Gruden, and then the laptop nerd sticks his foot in his mouth.
This ad fried my mind even crispier than wings at Hooters, only $12.99.
3. Hoot Camp – Audible
This one’s too real to not be top three. I can’t stand it when a group of people all order the same plate.
“Add some spice to your life! Order different stuff and share with your friends!” I yell at those tables while the IHOP security escorts me to the parking lot… again.
Once again, a successful parody of QB Camp. Even more successful than the first.
2. Just Go to Hooters
This ad signaled a change in direction for the breastaurant chain. At the time, it was believed women could be lured to Hooters with finger puppets and salads.
They weren’t wrong, but that’s not the point.
A frozen Gruden is the unexpected icing on the unusual cake. He usually talks by throwing his forearms all over the place, so it’s funny to see him sit still.
Without further ado, the numero uno Jon Gruden Hooters Commercial:
1. Coach Gruden Knows Futbol
With a Joey Chestnut cameo, this is hands-down the funniest Gruden Hooters commercial. Classic homonym confusion always equals comedy gold. Plus, John Daly coming in out of the left-field with a fruit bowl is a delight.
If all Hooters ads were this original, I just might go there for the wings.
The Gruden ads wrapped in 2015. Since then, Gruden has returned to coaching. He coached the Raiders to .500 in 2020, but the Red Head has his eyes on more.
Recent reports suggest Chucky’s intense stare is set on the Green Bay Packers Aaron Rodgers. Only time will tell if the head coach can raid the part-time Jeopardy! host or not.
The Raiders find themselves with a troublesome schedule this season. Gruden won’t have to face his old team and Tom Brady or Trey Lance and the 49ers, but the Raiders do have to face the Mahomes and the Chiefs twice.
With teams all over the league in reprisal, from the Ravens to the Eagles, Gruden can trust one bird of prey if his NFL revival fails: The Owls.
Gruden and Hooters have always had a fruitful relationship.
Luckily for Gruden, the chain has locations near the strip.