Vikings' Kluwe will keep tweeting, ‘being me'

Vikings punter Chris Kluwe stood behind his controversial Tuesday tweet that called out the idea of two other players holding up an NFL labor agreement. Kluwe has a history of "calling them like I see them" on Twitter and doesn't apologize for it. He talked about the tweet, the hubbub it caused and his history of Twitter opinions.

Chris Kluwe's tweet criticizing the idea that Patriots guard Logan Mankins and Chargers receiver Vincent Jackson might hold up the process of NFL players getting back to work was hardly the first time Kluwe's musings on Twitter have drawn attention.

The agents for Mankins and Jackson, who are plaintiffs in the Brady v. NFL antitrust lawsuit, were reportedly considering suing the league for the right to be unrestricted free agents or receive $10 million each in compensation. If they were to go through with that legal action, it could delay the resolution of the four-month-long labor impasse in the NFL.

That prompted the Vikings punter's attention-getting tweet: "Sigh, and once again greed is the operative byword. Congrats [Drew] Brees, [Peyton] Manning, Mankins, and Jackson for being 'that guy.'" The punter also added a hashtag of "d-bags" to the end of his comment.

According to the report that got it all started, quarterbacks Drew Brees and Peyton Manning aren't believed to be considering legal action, but Kluwe's tweet set off reaction from radio stations and sports television programs around the nation, and hours after his tweet, Kluwe defended his line of thinking, saying he doesn't believe two players should hold up nearly 2,000 others from getting back to work.

Kluwe's opinion and outspoken Twitter habits shouldn't surprise anyone who follows his Twitter account (@ChrisWarcraft). He has criticized the owners, the commissioner and, yes, even poked fun at himself.

In the past year, he sent out a self-deprecating tweet of a figurine a friend made depicting Kluwe diving to tackle Chicago Bears punt returner Devin Hester, a renowned thorn in Kluwe's net punting average, and also tweeted a link last week to a video he remade of the film "Downfall" in which Kluwe added his own subtitles to depict Adolf Hitler's reaction to the lockout. The subtitles are laced with profanity, but an adult audience might find humor in the bit.

After Tuesday's kerfuffle, casual fans also might have been reminded of a stick-figure drawing Kluwe composed on the white board in the Vikings locker room last year that questioned a safety video sent to players informing them what kind of hits are legal and what types will draw league discipline after several well-publicized hits came under scrutiny.

"That was the one where they sent us the video of these hits are legal, these hits are illegal. And it was basically: ‘These no-name players' hits are illegal and then Ray Lewis doing the exact same thing was legal.' What? Really?" Kluwe said Tuesday.

Kluwe said no one from the league ever contacted him about the drawing, which he sent out in picture form on his Twitter account. He doesn't know if the league will contact him about his latest comments once a labor deal is reached, but there is a clear distinction between players being disciplined for illegal acts and Kluwe simply criticizing other players and calling them unflattering names. Kluwe said he also wasn't criticizing "like James Harrison," the Steelers linebacker who called NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a "devil" and a "crook" in a Men's Journal interview.

Harrison also called out teammates Rashard Mendenhall and Ben Roethlisberger for their performances on the field. Which brings up another point: Would Kluwe have been as critical of Jackson and Mankins if they had been his teammates? Two of Kluwe's teammates, Brian Robison and Ben Leber, are part of the 10-player group in the Brady v. NFL antitrust lawsuit but weren't part of the players allegedly considering legal action.

"I think I would have. I'd like to think I know my teammates well enough to think that they probably wouldn't do something like that," Kluwe said. "I know Brian Robison and Ben Leber are also named plaintiffs on the case. I just think it's one of those things where they're a little more blue collar, they're a little more in touch with the people watching the game, where I don't think they would do something like that. If it was one of my teammates, it's one of those things where, hey, I call them like I see them and it just kind of leaves a bad taste in your mouth."

Since Kluwe's tweet, the players in question or their agents have all denied that they would hold up the process of agreeing to a new collective bargaining agreement.

As for Kluwe, who gained nearly a thousand new Twitter followers within six hours of his comments, he doesn't plan on holding back his criticisms when he feels they are justified.

"I'll keep being me. I figure until they actually fire me from the game of football, I think I'll keep putting out stuff that justifies my position," he said. "The other thing, too, is that I try not to say stuff that's blatantly attention-getting or anything like that. At the same time, when you see something like that go down, it just made me want to say something."


Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.


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\r\n\r\nWant more in-depth coverage on your favorite NFL team? Click here and get started today.\r\n","mobileBody":"Chris Kluwe's tweet criticizing the idea that Patriots guard Logan Mankins and Chargers receiver Vincent Jackson might hold up the process of NFL players getting back to work was hardly the first time Kluwe's musings on Twitter have drawn attention. The agents for Mankins and Jackson, who are plaintiffs in the Brady v. NFL antitrust lawsuit, were reportedly considering suing the league for the right to be unrestricted free agents or receive $10 million each in compensation. If they were to go through with that legal action, it could delay the resolution of the four-month-long labor impasse in the NFL. That prompted the Vikings punter's attention-getting tweet: \"Sigh, and once again greed is the operative byword. Congrats [Drew] Brees, [Peyton] Manning, Mankins, and Jackson for being 'that guy.'\" The punter also added a hashtag of \"d-bags\" to the end of his comment. According to the report that got it all started, quarterbacks Drew Brees and Peyton Manning aren't believed to be considering legal action, but Kluwe's tweet set off reaction from radio stations and sports television programs around the nation, and hours after his tweet, Kluwe defended his line of thinking, saying he doesn't believe two players should hold up nearly 2,000 others from getting back to work. Kluwe's opinion and outspoken Twitter habits shouldn't surprise anyone who follows his Twitter account (@ChrisWarcraft). He has criticized the owners, the commissioner and, yes, even poked fun at himself. In the past year, he sent out a self-deprecating tweet of a figurine a friend made depicting Kluwe diving to tackle Chicago Bears punt returner Devin Hester, a renowned thorn in Kluwe's net punting average, and also tweeted a link last week to a video he remade of the film \"Downfall\" in which Kluwe added his own subtitles to depict Adolf Hitler's reaction to the lockout. The subtitles are laced with profanity, but an adult audience might find humor in the bit. After Tuesday's kerfuffle, casual fans also might have been reminded of a stick-figure drawing Kluwe composed on the white board in the Vikings locker room last year that questioned a safety video sent to players informing them what kind of hits are legal and what types will draw league discipline after several well-publicized hits came under scrutiny. \"That was the one where they sent us the video of these hits are legal, these hits are illegal. And it was basically: ‘These no-name players' hits are illegal and then Ray Lewis doing the exact same thing was legal.' What? Really?\" Kluwe said Tuesday. Kluwe said no one from the league ever contacted him about the drawing, which he sent out in picture form on his Twitter account. He doesn't know if the league will contact him about his latest comments once a labor deal is reached, but there is a clear distinction between players being disciplined for illegal acts and Kluwe simply criticizing other players and calling them unflattering names. Kluwe said he also wasn't criticizing \"like James Harrison,\" the Steelers linebacker who called NFL commissioner Roger Goodell a \"devil\" and a \"crook\" in a Men's Journal interview. Harrison also called out teammates Rashard Mendenhall and Ben Roethlisberger for their performances on the field. Which brings up another point: Would Kluwe have been as critical of Jackson and Mankins if they had been his teammates? Two of Kluwe's teammates, Brian Robison and Ben Leber, are part of the 10-player group in the Brady v. NFL antitrust lawsuit but weren't part of the players allegedly considering legal action. \"I think I would have. I'd like to think I know my teammates well enough to think that they probably wouldn't do something like that,\" Kluwe said. \"I know Brian Robison and Ben Leber are also named plaintiffs on the case. I just think it's one of those things where they're a little more blue collar, they're a little more in touch with the people watching the game, where I don't think they would do something like that. If it was one of my teammates, it's one of those things where, hey, I call them like I see them and it just kind of leaves a bad taste in your mouth.\" Since Kluwe's tweet, the players in question or their agents have all denied that they would hold up the process of agreeing to a new collective bargaining agreement. As for Kluwe, who gained nearly a thousand new Twitter followers within six hours of his comments, he doesn't plan on holding back his criticisms when he feels they are justified. \"I'll keep being me. 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