'SNL' Cold Open Mocks Jon Gruden and the NFL

Saturday Night Live Season 47's third episode kicked off with a cold open parodying the NFL's scandal with former Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden. "Weekend Update" anchor Colin Jost appeared in a rare role, playing NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who introduced Gruden (new cast member James Austin Johnson). Later, Chris Redd came in to play Colin Kaepernick.

Earlier in the week, Gruden was fired when leaked emails showed he used racist and homophobic language in emails to former Washington general manager Bruce Allen when he worked for ESPN. In the SNL cold open, Gruden defended himself, claiming that whenever he called Goodell a homophobic slur, he meant to write "frigate" (a military term for a warship). Raiders owner Mark Davis (Alex Moffat) then came in to introduce new coach "Larry Rucker" (Pete Davidson), who had to resign immediately because of his racist emails. A Raiders equipment manager (Andrew Dismukes) was then appointed but then also resigned as coach immediately because of his bad tweets.

Redd's Kaepernick eventually came to the podium, who sarcastically wondered if there was ever anyone who tried to warn the public about racism in the NFL (like himself). "It's almost like that's the reason why they banned me from the league?" Kaepernick wondered. Davis then popped in to introduce LeVar Burton (Kenan Thompson) as the next Raiders coach, in a send-up of the Jeopardy! hosting debacle.

This week's episode was hosted by Oscar-winner Rami Malek, who can now be seen in theaters as the villain Safin in the James Bond movie No Time to Die. Malek, 40, won the Best Actor Oscar for his performance as Freddie Mercury in Bohemian Rhapsody, becoming the first actor of Egyptian heritage to win the award. Although he made his debut in a 2004 episode of Gilmore Girls, he scored his breakthrough part as Elliot Alderson in Mr. Robot, earning an Emmy in 2016. The musical guest was rapper Young Thug, who released his latest album, Punk, on Friday.


SNL Season 47 has begun with three consecutive episodes hosted by first-timers. The season kicked off with Owen Wilson on Oct. 2 and continued with Kim Kardashian West on Oct. 9. The Oct. 23 episode features former cast member Jason Sudeikis returning to host for the first time, while Brandi Carlile is set to perform. SNL is set to take Oct. 30 off, before starting three consecutive new episodes starting Nov. 6.