Chris Kluwe “looking forward” to Vikings’ punter competition


The Vikings added competition for punter Chris Kluwe in Round Five, selecting UCLA’s Jeff Locke with the No. 155 pick.

Locke averaged 43.3 yards on 77 punts in 2012, forcing 36 fair catches and having 34 attempts downed inside the opposition’s 20-yard-line. Moreover, he was exceptional on kickoffs, with 68 touchbacks in 89 attempts.

In a text message to PFT’s Mike Florio Saturday, Kluwe indicated he welcomed the challenge.

“I’m looking forward to competing for the Vikings’ punting job, as I would love to spend my entire career here, and as the best punter in Vikings history I’m enjoying the chance to show what I can do,” Kluwe said.

Kluwe posted a 39.7-yard net average on 72 punts in 2012, his best net average since entering the NFL in 2005. Like Locke, he is a UCLA product. Off the field, Kluwe is known for his social activism and his social media presence; he has more than 167,000 Twitter followers.

Late last season, after Kluwe was fined for putting a message on his jersey supporting Ray Guy’s Hall of Fame candidacy, Vikings special teams coordinator Mike Priefer showed his irritation.

“I don’t even want to talk about that,” Priefer said, according to a transcript from the club. “Those distractions are getting old for me, to be quite honest with you. Do I think Ray Guy deserves to be in the Hall of Fame Absolutely, but there’s other ways of going about doing it, in my opinion.”

In reply to a follow-up question about Kluwe, Priefer said: “He’s got to focus on punting and holding.”

The Vikings are already strong on kickoffs, with rookie placekicker Blair Walsh forcing 53 touchbacks in 86 attempts in 2012. If the Vikings want to reduce Walsh’s workload, then Locke may have an advantage, as Kluwe has just six career regular-season kickoffs.

Then there’s the matter of the Vikings using a fifth-round selection on Locke. PFT asked Kluwe if he believed this gave Locke an edge in the competition.

“It means they have invested in him, but it always comes down to how you perform under the lights,” Kluwe replied via text. “This is the NFL. We all get cut for someone younger and cheaper eventually.”

66 responses to “Chris Kluwe “looking forward” to Vikings’ punter competition

  1. young guy vs old guy
    cheaper contract vs more expensive contract, unless Locke is a massive bomb, I doubt Kluwe is wearing purple this year.

    Nice combo in Minnesota – Blair Walsh and a new young punter to compliment him for the next decade.

  2. Ummm you dont draft a P or K if theres a real competition. If you spend a pick on them, they WILL BE the guy next season. If you want camp competition, you get someone as an UFA. Kluwes gone and he knows it…hes just being PC

  3. I’m a Lions fan and this was the best pick of the draft. Now we don’t have to hear him rambling about non-football social issues. Best off season ever we get rid of Ayanbadejo and Kluwe in the same off season. Now they can partner up and go into politics (where they belong). Wish the Lions would have picked Locke.

  4. Hopefully he loses said competition so we can hear more about his opinions on gays.

  5. So if Kluwe loses the punting competition, will he file a sexual discrimination lawsuit against the Vikings and the NFL?

  6. Grab a guy who says Randy Moss is his role model, get ready to cut a guy who dares to think and speak out…
    Anyway, good to see them focusing on punting.

  7. WTF? that’s what I said when they drafted Walsh. Kluwe must be gone. I hope they’re not replaceing him because of his outspokeness. Seems funny they’d use a draft pick on a punter, they must need to clear some cap space, and they must be pretty happy with the personnel they have. ROCK-ON Chris!

  8. I hope the Vikings are dumb enough to let Kluwe go. He’s a great punter and it’s a position much more important than most people think.

    He’s also obviously a stand-up guy, willing to speak out on a sensitive issue. I can’t help but admire that.

    If Masthay weren’t so good I’d love to see Kluwe in the Green & Gold.

  9. Kluwe is likely to be cut before the end of April. The Vikings cut Ryan Longwell days after drafting Walsh last year. Kluwe is thankfully finished in Minnesota.

    Now he can go hang out with Peter King, who also uses his sports based profession to promote his own personal political and social beliefs. Lack of professionalism is what finished Kluwe in Minnesota.

  10. The Vikings also signed former jet’s starting Punter T.J. Conley in january. The competition will be between Conley and Locke. Kluwe will get “the Longwell treatment” and will likely be cut after Locke’s talents are confirmed at first mini camp.

    While Kluwe had his highest net average was a career high fir him, he was still only 25th best out of 32 starting punters.

    Frazier is continuing his purge of high drama players Harvin, Edwards, etc.

  11. Teach our punter to share his point of views… classic Spielman.. I dont like you.. You are gone… do we really need to upgrade our punter situation more than our QB? can someone please tell me why we wouldnt draft a qb? why? a back up punter over a true back up qb… feels like 5 years ago with Tjack.. Spielman needs to realize when a qb is a bust you draft before everyone realizes it.. not the year after…

  12. Some Vikings fans see statistics and think wow what a great punter Kluwe is but they are the same fans who don’t know what they are saying because the fact is for every 2 or 3 great games Kluwe has he also has 5 bad ones. Forget it when it’s cold or windy because he will shank multiple punts in the game. He has had 10 yd and 12 yd punts many times. Twice in Lambau and Chicago each and a couple of times in Gophers stadium, against the Redskins too. Not to mention Reggie Bush and Devin Hester with multiple punt return TD’s against him. Kluwe does not tackle well at all and line drives many punts for big returns. He fell off on punting the ball inside the 20 also. He is fraile and a very weak tackler. His political views are just the nail in the coffin.

  13. Kluwe seems to be an intelligent dude but he can’t really believe there will be an open competition can he? The Vikings will never “say so”, but you can bet Kluwe’s “social activisim” has grown old with them. As a kicker, he does do a good job when the chips are down but he seems to lack the concentration needed for consistency.

  14. prmpft said: “and he’s looking forward to seeing the new guy in the locker room shower…”

    No, that’s what TT does. It’s in his contract. In fact, he waived all remuneration so long as that proviso was inserted.

  15. What a terrible move by the Vikings. Klewe is a very, very good punter and they waste a draft pick on a punter?
    I’m pretty sick of people like his special teams coach saying stupid things like “he’s got to focus on punting and holding” as if that’s they only thing he’s supposed to be doing 24 hours a day 7 days a week. As if he doesn’t have any of his own free time to do whatever he sees fit with. It’s not like he’s advocating for gay marriage during practice time. It’s time to grow up people.

  16. Punter competition? Really? Hey p.s the nfl draft is going on….who cares about a punter competition. …. next……

  17. After Kluwe gets cut, he can spend his time promoting gays in the NFL and his other social issues. His mouth and agenda sealed his fate.

  18. hey raiderman……obviously you care seeing as you took the time to stop and comment. Obviously other people care too because this has twice as many comments as most if the posts today. If we want to be spot on…I’d say who really cares about the Raiders.

  19. Now he can concentrate on gay rights, not that there’s anything wrong with that.

  20. I tip my hat to Minnesota for finally getting rid of this clown. Serious. His mouth and self righteous act were much larger than his leg. Most Vikings fans I know had grown tired of his a long time ago. I will miss seeing him shank numerous punts (Packets fan), but the truth is the Vikings just became a better team today.

    Now hopefully CLUELESS will go back into the closet where he belongs!

  21. Kluwe did a great job as a punter and I have no problem with him expressing his political views on his own time. What I didn’t like was his attitude toward anyone who disagreed with him. Not classy at all. Thank you for your contributions, Chris, and don’t let the door hit you on the way out of Winter Park.

  22. Vikes are cash strapped and can save a small, but meaningful, amount by cutting Kluwe.

    They used a 5th round pick on a punter. Their intention to cut Kluwe is clear. But at the same time this is a team that is trying to contend and Kluwe is a solid punter.

    Personally as a fan I’d much rather they put this pick somewhere else. But if they can cut Kluwe and save just enough money to sign a veteran inside backer then it will be a good move, assuming Locke can perform at this level.

  23. I have to look up stats to see where Kluwe falls into the punting ranking in the NFL. If the only reason he gets cut is for speaking his mind, it pathetic at best. I don’t care what anyone says. He has a write to speak his mind and has a HUGE following for it. The guy was entertaining as hell and blunt. It was only when he started speaking of marriage equality the haters came out of the closet.

  24. And Vikings former punter and sideline reporter, Greg Coleman is upset, After all he is an ath-a-lete.

  25. Since this kid will be one of the best kicker-punters in the NFL then the Vikes can get rid of both Kluwe and their placekicker leaving a spot open at another position on the roster which they will surely need.

  26. Its one thing to voice your opinion, its another to think that you are somehow a leader of a great social movement when in reality, you are just a punter for a football team that is more famous for choking than anything else.

    I don’t want to silence anyone but I hope he gets cut so I don’t have to listen to him anymore. He thinks he is more important than he really is, sort of like the fans of his football team.

  27. Mike Priefer was calling for this, guaranteed. They, obviously, have had their differences due to Ray Guy HOF jersey, tweets, and obvious other distractions. If Kluwe does go, he definitely did a lot more good for the Vikes than he ever did bad IMO. I could care less about his personal life or opinions, although I find some very insightful and/or entertaining. I do care about how much time or energy directed toward the job that has allowed him to create attention to his cause. PS… I hope the kid can hold for Walsh.

  28. swaggyy says:
    Apr 27, 2013 7:10 PM
    Now he can focus on gay rights activism, which accomplishes absolutely nothing. Seriously doe, why is this news?

    I’m sorry but the second sentence made you not only look like a retard but a narrow minded retarded fool. Since when has doe replace though? Maybe thats the language I read about on line from time to time I think its called Walmart.

  29. Sorry Chris, but you are not the best punter in Viking history. That honor belongs to Greg Coleman.

    And Chris, one other thing: you know the arrogance you displayed in making that statement, along with the arrogance displayed last season? That is the reason why you will be getting released in the next few days.

  30. Why does everyone seem so irritated about Kluwe’s off field opinions? Turns out NFL fans really are bigger meatheads than I thought. And apparently quite angry about the idea of equality.

  31. As a Viking 4life for all you people out there who defend Kluwe, it’s not his opinions that get him in trouble, it’s his opinions and views that seem to distract from his being a consistent punter. It’s fine to stand up for what you believe in, but don’t make your livelihood suffer because of it-it seems he picked the nationally televised games to have his worst efforets. I will be surprised if he’s here come September. Even his position coach said his off field antics hurts his punting.

  32. I am always amazed how those who represent themselves as being “liberal” and “tolerant” are usually the most rude and most insulting of those who may honestly disagree with them. They should look into the mirror and do some serious introspection.

  33. Chace,
    Your reading into this too much. It’s the GBay trolls that have a problem with equality. They’re high & mighty, self-righteous mentality is due to Favre bitterness.
    Vikes will lock up Rodgers later down the road too.
    It seems to be another fall back CheeseTrolls try & capitalize on.

  34. ampats says:
    Apr 27, 2013 4:52 PM
    After Kluwe gets cut, he can spend his time promoting gays in the NFL and his other social issues. His mouth and agenda sealed his fate.


    I think you meant to say: “After Kluwe gets cut, he can get signed by the Seahawks”

  35. His game dipped & he was too stupid to dial-down his public persona.

    He is a typical “intelligent” liberal who thinks his opinions trump all others.

    He made this bed & given how the Vikes treated Longwell, they are more likely to move on a year early vs a year late.

    Peace bro

  36. Ok Vikings just need to get rid of Kluwe to get rid of the trouble! I mean look at their averages! Locke averaged 44.7 and Kluwe only averaged 39.1 so Locke is a little better. And to the guy that said we need a new QB u are dumb because Ponder is progressing! U cant expect a QB to come into the NFL and be great his first year or two! Normally they aren’t even starting because they need to learn. Thats all he is doing is learning and he is getting better.

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