Rob Gronkowski: I Would Be Fine With A Gay Teammate
Rob Gronkowski would have no problem with a gay teammate.
The star tight end for the New England Patriots said he wouldn’t have a problem sharing the lockerroom if the first openly gay player were on his team.
“I got this question before, about a year ago, and I basically will say the same answer that I did a year ago,” Gronkowski said Wednesday in an interview with Stephen A. Smith and Ryan Ruocco on ESPN Radio New York. “You’ve got to accept the player. Everyone has their own ways to live their life and as long as he’s respecting me, keeping distance, respecting myself, I’ll respect him back.
“If he’s being a great teammate and he’s a guy on the field doing a great job, well then you’ve got nothing to complain about. He’s another teammate and another friend.”
Gronkowski was asked about a gay teammate back in the summer, saying that “as he’s being a good teammate and being respectful and everything, that’s cool.”
The player said he isn’t concerned as much with how teammates view him than how fans could react. But others have said that the first openly gay NFL player could become could strike a marketing goldmine.
There has never been an openly gay player in the NFL, though a handful have come out after retiring.
A gay NFL player would appear to have support outside of Rob Gronkowski. A number of players have become vocal advocates for LGBT acceptance, including Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe and free agent linebacker Scott Fujita.
“I’ve long believed I would not see an openly gay NFL player for decades,” Fujita wrote on his blog, “that might be wrong.”