Andrew Luck would have "absolutely no problem" with an openly gay teammate.
The standout Indianapolis Colts quarterback sat down with Jim Boulden of CNN during a recent trip to London to discuss a number of issues, including the possibility of an openly gay player in the NFL.
“It’s the 21st century, and I know I would have absolutely no problem with it. I hope no one would treat him any differently than any straight player, no special treatment. He’s just another guy, another part of it," Luck told CNN when asked if he would have any issue with an openly gay player. “It's none of our business, the sexual preference of people. So, I hope if someone's thinking about it, that if they do come out as gay and are a professional football player and it makes them happy and it makes their life easier, then I think they should do it.”
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Luck's comments came just days after Los Angeles Galaxy midfielder Robbie Rogers became the first active openly gay male athlete to participate in a U.S. professional team sport. Rogers came out in February 2013 but didn't return from a self-imposed hiatus from his sport until May. Rogers' return came a few weeks after NBA veteran Jason Collins came out in a moving first-person essay in Sports Illustrated.
Although the NFL has its share of LGBT allies, notably punter Chris Kluwe, there has yet to be an openly gay active player in the league. Marriage equality and the possibility of an openly gay player remain divisive issues. Reigning NFL MVP Adrian Peterson recently told told Sirius/XM NFL Radio that he is "not with" gay marriage.
“To each his own. I’m not with it," Peterson said of gay marriage, via NESN.com. "But you know I have relatives that are gay. I’m not biased towards them. I still treat them the same. I love'em. But again, I’m not with that. That’s not something I believe in. But, to each his own."
Prior to Super Bowl XLVII, San Francisco 49ers cornerback Chris Culliver sparked controversy by saying an openly gay player would not be welcome on his team. He would later apologize.
"I don't do the gay guys man," Culliver told shock jock Artie Lange during a radio interview, via Yahoo! Sports. "I don't do that. No, we don't got no gay people on the team, they gotta get up out of here if they do."
During a visit to HuffPost Live earlier this week, Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Namath shared a message for those NFL players uncomfortable with the possibility of having a gay teammate.
"I have friends that are gay. I've worked in theater, I've been in art, you know, for some time," Namath told HuffPost Live host Mike Sacks. "We work shoulder to shoulder. There's a lot of love from me to them too. That's life, you know. And if you've got a hangup about it, I hope you can get over it because it's real."