Free-agent NFL linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo is an outspoken advocate for equal rights and gay marriage, and he called in to Toucher & Rich on Monday morning to discuss the issues in advance of his appearance at the John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum at Harvard on Monday night.
Ayanbadejo spoke about how the NFL has done much, if anything at all, to promote equal rights, noting that the NHL just became official partners with the You Can Play campaign, which aims to promote respect in sports.
“It is a progressive thing,” Ayanabadejo said. “It’s going to take people, it’s going to be a slow process, but we’re going to get it done eventually.”
He added that when a player does finally come out publicly as gay, it won’t “be as bad as people think.”
“We’re definitely trying to ease tensions, have this be something that people talk about and educate people,” he said. “The more we talk about it, the more understanding will occur.”
After discussing the issues for several more minutes, Rich wanted to know more about Ayanbadejo’s famous tweets from January, when he referred to the Patriots’ offensive strategy as “b****a**ness.”
“Is it not fair? No, it’s perfectly fair,” Ayanabadejo said. “You can do what you want to do and repercussions happen. Things happen when you do things like that. So it’s working but it’s not winning Super Bowls, so I don’t know. It’s just one of those things that it’s football. It’s football. I’m not trying to catch you off guard, it’s football. If you want to play speed ball, go ahead, play speed ball, run an offensive play, do this and do that. But when you do something like that … I’ve been playing football for over 20 years and playing professionally for 14 years, it’s just something that I wouldn’t do and I wouldn’t have team do. But if they want to do it, then so be it.
“I mean, you’ve got the best quarterback in the league, one of the best head coaches in the league, let’s play football.”
Rich, needing to know more about Ayanbadejo’s description of the Patriots’ offensive strategy, asked more about the adjective.
“I don’t know, you guys bringing this up is b****a**ness. I think that,” Ayanbadejo said.
The conversation then got pretty interesting, with Ayanbadejo insulting Rich’s looks, among other topics.