Off-The-Field Issues

2014 Minnesota Vikings: (UPDATED) Tea Leaves Indicate Bad News for Mike Priefer

[NOTE – Story updated below]

UPDATE5: There’s still a lot of traffic being funneled to this page. For an update on how everything stands after the press conference, head over here.

There are a few signs now that the Vikings’ report (commissioned by the Vikings and created by Chris Madel) on allegations made by former punter Chris Kluwe of homophobic behavior from Mike Priefer is going to conclude today with a press conference, and the conclusion probably isn’t good for the Vikings. First there’s this, two weeks ago from Mike Freeman:

Then there’s the fact that the Vikings won’t be releasing the report. Chris Kluwe and his lawyer Clay Halunen have called a press conference specifically because of this fact.

Last night, KSTP reported that the Vikings wouldn’t release the report because it could be “damaging and embarrassing” to the Vikings organization:

A source close to the investigation tells 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS the Vikings and the National Football League (NFL) have completed an investigation into former Viking Chris Kluwe’s allegations against a coach.

The source, who is speaking on condition of anonymity, says the Vikings are now reconsidering releasing the investigative report because it is “damaging and embarrassing” to the organization.

. . .

The same source says the Vikings have already made changes in their organization and are approaching this very seriously and are taking responsible action to “correct any homophobic culture that exists within the organization.” The source says there is no new information about a separate legal agreement that is being negotiated by the Vikings and Kluwe.

Kluwe has threatened a workplace discrimination lawsuit if the Vikings do not acknowledge and address his concerns.

It’s good that the Vikings are internally getting ahead of the investigation of course, but this is a bad look heading into training camp. We’ll learn more as the day goes on.

UPDATE4: The Vikings have released a statement, claiming they’ve never made or broken any promises to Kluwe and his team:

Magnuson, Madel and others spent nearly six months conducting an exhaustive investigation. After the Vikings were given the investigative materials from Magnuson and Madel, in order to further maintain objectivity and integrity, the team engaged a nationally-prominent law firm in employment matters – Littler Mendelson P.C. – to evaluate employment law matters and provide findings and recommendations to the Vikings. Those recommendations are to be provided to the team this week.

As Magnuson and Madel confirmed today, the Vikings have never made or broken promises as Kluwe and his attorney Clayton Halunen have claimed. The Vikings have also never engaged in the various comments that Kluwe and Halunen have provided to the media over the past six months. This Thursday, July 17, the team has a meeting scheduled between Halunen and Vikings attorneys to discuss next steps

As we have consistently communicated throughout this process, the Vikings will have further comment when the investigation is entirely complete and the team has made determinations on next steps.

Of note, the Vikings not only have claimed never to have made a promise to make the results of the investigation public, they took a shot at Kluwe and Halunen for how the case has been handled by them to the media.


UPDATE3: It seems as if AJ was using information he learned from speaking with Chris Kluwe’s lawyer. Full story at KFAN:

Chris Kluwe will announce his intentions to file suit against the Minnesota Vikings at his press conference Tuesday morning.

A former Vikings punter, Kluwe brought allegations against the Vikings nearly six months ago claiming that Special Teams coach Mike Priefer had made “homophobic verbal attacks on him as a member of the team in 2012.” The team then kicked off an internal investigation before informing Kluwe on Monday that they would not be releasing their investigations’ final report to Kluwe or the public.

“It’s transparently obvious to me that the Vikings are covering up the truth,” said Kluwe’s attorney Clayton Halunen. “We have no choice but to litigate at this point. Kluwe willingly cooperated with the Vikings’ investigation – all he ever wanted was for the truth to come out.

“It’s outrageous to me that the Vikings would choose to hide the facts of the investigation from me and from their fans,” Kluwe said.

UPDATE2: Don’t know if AJ is speculating based off of information he has or if he’s trying to interpret what we all know. If it’s the latter, I think that’s not a very good interpretation of events. If it’s the former, then that will be interesting. Not sure what grounds for that suit would be, but the discovery process would enter the report into public record, giving us all access.


UPDATE: Here’s a bunch of tweets from journalists, with the first one including a big update from the Vikings.







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  1. The big question will be what to do about a coach that behaved in the manner described by Kluwe(if this rumor is true). I would expect acknowledging that this is a true story, this is clearly grounds for dismissal. Anything less would be to open themselves to a suit.

    1. By itself, none. The report theoretically provides legal shielding to the Vikings if Kluwe takes it to court, because it indicates a good-faith attempt (and presumably reasonable) measures to resolve the allegations referred to by Kluwe.

      But the worse the Vikings look, the less important the report is, legally.

  2. Chris Kluwe is a nobody that wants attention. This is a non issue. Should have dumped him way before they did. If I were the VIKINGS I would not release anything and would not negotiate anything with him.

  3. They can’t just ignore it. The Vikes biggest mistake right now was not having their side ready to release last weekend when Lebron decided to join the Cavs and NBA free agency blew up for a couple days. This would have been largely lost in the shuffle of that news to the national media providing a bit of relief to the organization. Now they are forced to speak on it when it will be the #1 sports story out there. They should have known that Kluwe would attempt to break this at the worst possible time to make them look bad and force their hand.

  4. I suspect that like all “major stories” in our press once the next “major story” arrives this one will get shuffled to the back page and the game moves one. War in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, the kidnapped girls in Nigeria, Snowden, and the middle East are much bigger stories then Kluwe’s self interest under the pretense of “rights issues” . Training camp opens, 10 questions by the major media reporters, then it filters down to the local yabs of talk radio who will get “interviews” with Mr. Spotlight. Two weeks later it’s Kluwe trying to get some traction in the spotlight. If Priefer made homophobic comments he should be reprimanded, punished, fined, or suspended. But, Chris Kluwe should not be the one demanding any punishment, just my 2 cents but that’s what keeps VikingsTerritory posts going.