Mike Priefer and the Vikings just want the Chris Kluwe mess to go away, but that’s not going to happen as long as the media keep asking questions about the former punter and his (temporarily suspended) impending lawsuit.
Priefer certainly knew he would have to face a little more of the music on Thursday as camp opened in Mankato, and sure enough, when Priefer arrived the media throngs were there to hurl more questions at the embattled special teams coach.
And Priefer was ready. With more apologizing.
“With my comment I failed… I made a mistake and I let down the Vikings organization,” Priefer said. “I’ve got to be more sensitive.”
And Priefer will get help learning to be more sensitive when he takes a course as part of his punishment. Successful completion of said sensitivity training will reduce his three game suspension to two.
When asked further questions about the now-completed (but as yet not fully released) investigation, Priefer said he has not seen the full report and said he would not answer specific questions. He would not answer when asked if his homophobic remarks went beyond the one he admitted to during the investigation.
Asked if he worried about losing his job, he said he tried not to think about that. Priefer said the investigation was brought up during his early chats with Mike Zimmer, but refused to go into specifics about what was said in those meetings.
So, Priefer offered more contrition, but not more admission. More apology, but not more detail. Pretty much as you would expect.
How much the ongoing situation ends up distracting the Vikings from their important camp activities remains to be seen. The team and Chris Kluwe remain embroiled in settlement talks with Kluwe still dangling the threat of lawsuit and further revelation over the team’s head.