There could soon be an openly gay kicker in the NFL.
Middle Tennessee State player Alan Gendreau is hoping to earn a spot on an NFL roster next season.
Gendreau, who is the leading scorer in Sun Belt Conference history with 295 points, will be entering the NFL draft this year. He also happens to be openly gay. If Gendreau gets drafted he will become the first openly gay player in the NFL.
According to Yahoo Sports, Gendreau has been openly gay since about 15-years-old. His teammates at Middle Tennessee State, as well as his coaches, knew about his sexuality, and, unsurprisingly, everyone managed to get along just fine.
MTSU punter Josh Davis told Outsports.com: “Everyone just saw him as a football player … He was just one of the guys. The fact that he proved himself on the field, there was a respect for him. He’s a good guy. He’s a lot of fun to be around. With all the coaches and players, he had a good relationship.”
Gendreau ended his college career in 2011 and didn’t get drafted into the NFL last season. But Gendreau still has hopes of making the NFL. If he does, he’ll be the first openly gay kicker (or player) in the National Football League.
But Gendreau said that he isn’t concerned about that.
Gendreau said: “I’m a kicker that happens to be gay … It’s a part of who I am, and not everything I am. I just want to be known as a normal kicker.”
Gendreau is hoping to get an invite to an NFL training camp this summer so that he can prove that he’s worthy of playing in the NFL. Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe, who is a big supporter of gay rights, said that he believes that Gendreau could make it at the professional level.
Kluwe said: “It’s totally legit that he can get into the league … Place-kicking is all about doing this one specific skill set. And if you can do that, you can make it whether you’ve been out of football for one year or 10 years.”