Vikings Asst Coach Wants Chris Kluwe to Lay Off the Activism on Gay Rights and Other Issues

Minnesota Vikings Assistant Coach Mike Priefer tells the AP that punter Chris Kluwe's activism on gay rights and other issues is "getting old" and it's time to concentrate on football:

Chr_kluweThe Vikings have generally stood behind their renaissance man, rarely getting in the way when he has tried to use his platform to raise awareness to issues away from the field. Kluwe became an important and high-profile advocate for gay marriage during the election. He's also addressed what he sees as a problem the NFL has with drunken driving in the wake of Dallas Cowboys player Jerry Brown's death and criticized voters for not putting a punter into the hall.

With the Vikings (7-6) trying to chase a playoff spot in the final three games of the season, Priefer thinks it's time for Kluwe to cool it with the activism and concentrate on his job.

"To me, it's getting old," Priefer said. "He's got to focus on punting and holding."


  1. nick says

    Exactly Coach-Chris should concentrate on something really important like football-the hell with human rights- let’s play ball. And how exactly does his activism affect his PUNTING? -oh that’s right -it doesn’t!
    I love watching football as much as a good many people in this country and attend college and pro games– but his “concerns” about Chris expressing what he believes is important in his life is laughable. Why doesn’t he ask the many members of his team to stop shoving their religion down people’s throats?–or isn’t that a distraction?

  2. Mitch says

    Got to focus on punting and holding? What? Is he missing practices? Demonstrating on the field instead of punting and holding? It’s not like he gets down on his knee in the middle of the game to demonstrate his beliefs.

    Sure seems like Kluwe is more than capable to multitask, to have more than one thing going on in his life. So what is this really about, Mr Priefer?

  3. Fenrox says

    Yeah I do not believe that that report is in any way an accurate assessment of that guys feelings. You have to be able to trust your news source BEFORE responding to it. The tone and composition of that story are all too tweaked. When I was an editor in chief at my college newspaper, I had a couple of reporters that would submit stories like this. I would follow up and get a very different account of the meeting.

    Reacting to this garbage story (One you may not have even linked through to read) is stupid, don’t be like that. This coach is being set up for a lot of hate because this lazy ass reporter couldn’t be bothered to write a concise story.

  4. Rick says

    Kluwe is currently ranked 18th among the 38 punters in the NFL, so it would not seem that his activism is effecting his performance.

    On the other hand, professional athletes are generally discouraged from becoming too active in politics of any sort while they are active players because the franchises they are employed by and the leagues themselves cater to the entire population and do not want to be seen as being biased in any way.

    The same reason that owners of franchises try to keep a low political profile.

    Sports is one of the few areas of society where everybody can come together and forget about their other differences, including political differences, and most people would like to keep it that way.

    So while I am not agreeing with the coach in this instance, I do not think that his statement is necessarily motivated by homophobia (it might be) or by hostility to Kluwe, himself.

    That said, if closet-boy Tim Tebow is going to be allowed to make advertisements for Focus on the Family, then what is sauce for the goose should be sauce for the gander.

    Trust me, though, there are LOTS of Evangelicals on NFL rosters (mostly black), so the last thing any of you should want is for the NFL or any other sports league or franchise to encourage its players to become overtly political on a large scale.

    Just saying this can be a double-edged sword, so guys like Kluwe should know where to draw the line–be supportive, but don’t turn your support into a crusade–that would be my advice.

  5. Rick says

    “so IF he was advocating the UNited WAy or something like that – he’d say the same thing? NOT!!!!!!!!!!”

    Apples and oranges. Charities are non-controversial. Politics is ALWAYS controversial.

    Again, guys like Kluwe just have to know where to draw the line, that’s all. I am frankly surprised that none of the coaches or executives of the Vikings have not asked him to rein it in a little before now.

    The advocacy provided by pro athletes is critical in moving us forward–I just don’t want to see them jeopardize the good they are doing by being overly zealous.

  6. Derrick from Philly says

    “Trust me, though, there are LOTS of Evangelicals on NFL rosters (mostly black), so the last thing any of you should want is for the NFL or any other sports league or franchise to encourage its players to become overtly political on a large scale.”

    Yep, I could tell that Evangelical Christian Tim Tebow was “passing”. It’s that bubble butt and probably a big thaing in the front. Yep, it’s the “(mostly black)” ones.

    Just when I thought you were about to make a comment that wasn’t that offensive…you managed to…

  7. Craig says

    I bet any amount of money that he’s a religious activist.

    Funny, I haven’t heard the same sentiment about players that go to church twice a week and volunteer for their church activities. Imagine if he said that those players needed to concentrate on football. He’d be fired given the plethora of evangelical homophobes working in the NFL (**cough cough Tony Dungy)

  8. db says

    AJ and Cameron–if you really think this is a non-story I’m confused why you are looking at this site at all. If you came on looking for people slobbering over sports news you’re in the wrong place.

  9. Chitown kev says

    @Derrick from Philly

    Tim Tebow isn’t passing for black but with him kissin’ those black men all of the time, you sure can’t tell, can you.

    Betcha the idea of Tim Tebow with all those black men in the locker room drives Rick wild, po’ thang.

  10. Derrick from Philly says

    With the news about the massacre of the children in Connecticut I didn’t want to respond on this topic, but…

    @”DERRICK – of course you’re offended, you’re dying to be offended”

    Yeah, and I’m just foolish enough to allow some flat-azz White supremacist b.tches do it.


    they still get to me every now and then– and I don’t even read any of this blogs’ articles that could possibly deal with the issue of race anymore. But the motha’ f.ckas will sneak up on you…. the arrogant b.tches feel so superior, and they aint sh.t.

  11. SC David says

    Kluwe’s latest activist gesture involved putting a Post-It note on his uniform asking people to put a punter into the Hall of Fame. That drew a $5250 fine from the league (of course, Kluwe’s salary is about $1M/year so $5K is peanuts to him). Stuff like that–during a game–is distracting to other players.

  12. HUH says

    A lot of football players party, drink, get in trouble, etc after hours. Kluwe is trying to make a difference on an issue and the coach doesn’t like it? How about focusing on the players with real problems?

    Btw @ Fenrox: just who are you to assess the merits this story? A college newspaper editor? WOW! You have some real journalism credentials to brag about! Give me a break. It sounds like you are an apologist for the coach and are trying to shoot the messenger and spin it your way. Nice try!

  13. Diogenes Arktos says

    @Francis: nicely said

    @Rick: Charities can most certainly be controversial. Focus on the Family and the Salvation Army are charities.

    @Garst: Not exactly. The first amendment means that the government cannot shut you up. However, your employer can.

    @SC David: How many players even noticed the Post-It? Especially on a punter!

    @Huh: LOL

  14. BadHumorBoy says

    Priefer has gotten old if he thinks Kluwe’s passion is slacking on punting and holding. Priefer needs to cool it with distracting public criticism and focus on his own job of keeping his team good to go!

  15. andrew says

    Chris Klume should tell the Viking’s Asst Coach what my old Irish grandmother use to tell me: “Wish in one hand and s*it in the other and see which one gets filled the fastest”.

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