Vikings' Mike Priefer: I'm a better man because of sensitivity training

Thursday September 18th, 2014

Minnesota Vikings special teams coach Mike Priefer said he's a "better man" after undergoing sensitivity training as part of punishment for making a homophobic remark while with team members in 2012.

From the Minneapolis Star Tribune

“The details, we’re going to keep those confidential,” Priefer said. “But I will tell you this: It was real positive. It was very professionally done. And like anything else in life, if you put a lot into it, you’re going to get a lot out of it. I tell my kids that, I tell my players that. So I went into it with a great attitude and I got a lot out of it, quite honestly.”

Priefer was asked if he’s a changed person.

“I don’t know if I’ve changed, but I think I have more awareness of my surroundings and other people around me,” he said. “I think I’m a better man because of it.”

DOHRMANN: Why a diehard Vikings fan walked away from football

Former Vikings punter Chris Kluwe, who last month reached a settlement with the team to avoid a lawsuit, alleged Priefer made anti-gay comments in his presence. 

Vikings officials launched an investigation after a first-person essay written by Kluwe was published on Deadspin in January. It was titled "I was an NFL Player Until I was Fired by Two Cowards and A Bigot." In the essay, Kluwe describes Priefer as "a bigot who didn't agree with the cause I was working for."

The investigation concluded that Kluwe was released in May 2013 for reasons related to football. Priefer was suspended three games after the investigation found that he made "offensive and insensitive" remarks around Kluwe. The suspension was reduced to two games on the condition that Priefer undergo sensitivity training.

- Chris Johnson

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