Former Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe has been one of the most outspoken players to ever wear a NFL uniform. Kluwe has used his platform to fight for marriage equality, which is something that everyone who embraces progress can respect and appreciate.
Unfortunately, it seemingly ended his NFL career.
The Vikings released Kluwe, and he truly believes it was because of his willingness to fight the good fight.
“The Vikings have already admitted that they cut me because of my activism; they have already admitted that [Priefer’s homophobic statements] were said by a direct supervisor to someone under his control; they’ve already admitted that one of their employees took a matter of harassment and discrimination to someone in upper management and then upper management did nothing about it,” Kluwe told AskMen.com in an interview discussing the lawsuit he is filing against the team.
There was one very interesting nugget of information in the interview from Kluwe which expresses some concern about a former teammate.
Kluwe is worried about his ex-teammate, good friend and Minnesota Vikings long-snapper, Cullen Loeffler.
Loeffler was named in the Vikings internal investigation as a player who confirmed a homophobic comment from special teams coordinator Mike Priefer.
Because Loeffler was named in the report, Kluwe fears that the Vikings could retaliate against the long-snapper by not re-signing him next season despite the fact that he is more than capable of still doing his job on the football field.
“I’m worried about my long-snapper, Cullen Loeffler. In the report that the Vikings put out they [say] Cullen was the one who corroborated that Priefer made the statement, ‘We should round up all the gays, send them to an island, and then nuke it until it glows,'” Kluwe told Ask Men.
“Cullen is an aging long-snapper, nearing the end of his contract and I’m almost positive that the team is going to retaliate against him and not re-sign him — even though he can still do his job. He’s done his job wonderfully for the last 10, 11 years now and there’s no reason that he can’t play another two or three years.
“I think he’s in trouble simply because of the fact that he was there. It’s an unfortunate fact that that’s how the NFL works, is you can get blacklisted from the NFL very easily — and that’s something that was in the report, something that was discussed.”
If Kluwe’s concern becomes a reality, that could spell more bad news for the Vikings.
After the way they have handled the Kluwe situation, the team will be under a microscope to ensure they are not mishandling players. If comments that Loeffler made to help further an investigation impact their future decisions, it is another black eye on the team.
You can read the in-depth interview from Kluwe over on AskMen.com, which discusses a wide range of topics and provides more insight into one of the most vocal players in league history.