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Chris Kluwe Q&A

By Jerry McDonald - NFL Writer
Friday, May 17th, 2013 at 2:57 pm in Oakland Raiders.

Transcript of a conference call Friday with Raiders punter Chris Kluwe and the local media:

Q: How and when did all this transpire?

Kluwe: Well, I was born in 1981, grew up . . . no, after the Vikings released me I had kind of been waiting to see what would happen. My agent had contact with the Raiders, said they were interested, was brought in for a tryout, think I punted fairly well and they decided to bring me in for the OTAs and hopefully fall camp.

Q: Exciting to come to the Raiders with their history of punters, Guy, Lechler . . .what would it mean to come in here and punt for the Raiders?

Kluwe: It would be awesome. The Raiders have a great history of not just punters, but special teams overall. The Raiders have always been one of those teams where they take a lot of pride in their special teams and it really shows. For me to have a chance to come in and contribute to that I’m really looking forward to it.

Q: Moved to California when you were a kid?

Kluwe: I was born in Philadelphia but my parents moved to Southern California when I was about one, so for all intents and purposes I grew up in Southern California.

Q: Did you have hope you would play for an NFL team in California?

Kluwe: It would be nice, I was actually kind of hoping to do the spend-your-entire-career-with-one-team thing, I think that’s pretty cool and you get kind of that legacy, almost. At the same time, I think that’s really hard to do in the modern NFL. That really doesn’t happen that much any more. So yeah, the situation coming up was just amazing for me because I’m a lot closer to my family now. My parents will be able to come out and see quite a few more games. It’s really cool.

Q: Do you think you’re coming off your two best seasons?

Kluwe: I think I’ve had a pretty good career in general. I’ve had good numbers. I’ve always strived to do exactly what the coaches want me to do. My goal is just to be here and help this team win any way I can. You don’t really hope to see your punter on the field that much, but when he’s out there, you hope you can do what’s necessary to help the team win.

Q: Were you surprised Vikings didn’t bring you back?

Kluwe: I was a little surprised, because I think I contributed over the years to the team, but it’s the NFL, it’s business, and it’s just one of the unfortunate aspects of the business in that we don’t get to call our own shots as players. We kind of have to go with what management and coaches want.

Q: You’ve had a pretty interesting career outside of football, social activism, rock and roll, twitter, you looking forward to Raider fans? Have you already gotten a Twitter bump?

Kluwe: Yeah, I’m definitely looking forward to interacting with Raider fans. Raider fans are very passionate about the team and really looking forward to getting to meet quite a few of those people. I know in Minnesota it was a lot of fun, just doing Twitter events and things like that. Hopefully here in Oakland it will be the same way.

Q: You’re known for being outspoken about civil rights issues, in particular, you’re focused on California Prop 8. What are your plans with regard to Prop 8?

Kluwe: Well, my first plan is to make the team. That’s the overriding influence right now. I don’t really anticipate a whole lot necessary there because it’s one of those things where the Supreme Court should look at it and realize that there are established precedents in place to rule the right way on this case. I’m hopeful that once June rolls around, the Supreme Court will have made the right decision.

Q: Were you surprised at the nation-wide acceptance of Jason Collins coming out as gay?

Kluwe: I was pleasantly surprised, I guess, just the fact that this seems to be something that as younger generations grow up, they really don’t see what the fuss is about. That gives me hope for the future of our society because it really is a matter of people being free to live their own lives without being oppressed by other people, which is kind of the very core of this civilization.

Q: Raiders had a focus on high-character guys of late . . how do you fit into that?

Kluwe: Hopefully I fit in pretty well. I’ve never been arrested. I’ve never done anything detrimental to the team or said anything detrimental about coaches or other players. For me, I just want to come out and help the Raiders win in any way I can. That’s what my job here is to do, help the football team win game.

Q: Did I read your stats right, that you’ve only had one punt blocked?

Kluwe: Yeah, and the only reason it got blocked is that I dropped it. That’s one of those things I also pride myself on, that I have one of the quickest get-off times in the NFL. It hopefully takes some pressure off the guys blocking up front where they can get down and get in coverage faster because they know I’m going to get the ball off.

Q: Seems like kickers and specialists are almost like a brotherhood, do you know Sebastian Janikowski and Jon Condo at all?

Kluwe: I got a chance to meet them when the Raiders played in Minnesota, three or four years ago. Didn’t get a real chance to talk to them outside of that, but I’m definitely looking forward to meeting them and getting to know them, because it is one of those things where unless you’re a specialist, you really don’t understand what the specialist’s job is like. It’s sort of that specialist job you have to do to know what it is. I’m anticipating good relations with both of them and also getting to know Marquette. I met him when I went in for my work out and he seems like a great kid.

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  • hwnrdr

    Good Morning Nation!!! Over 2100 post already…can’t they write a new post about the fans planning on showing up at Alameda for Woodsons arrival tomorrow? Well…

  • Just Fire Baby

    When I think about the early Chuck Wood years, I can’t help but think we wasted all that world-class athleticism not utilizing him at WR and in the return game.

    I mean, we just let him go after 7 years anyways, should have ground him into the dirt playing both ways and returning punts.

    He could have been everything Deon was and more, IMO.

  • hwnrdr

    True, JFB!

  • RaidingTexas

    ProFootballTalk @ProFootballTalk 4m
    Bruce Arians says Carson Palmer was great in “a crazy situation” in Oakland http://wp.me/p14QSB-8WD8

  • Just Fire Baby

    Arians is in for a huge suprise

  • RaiderRockstar

    Reggie McKenzie, Dennis Allen & Greg Knapp talked up Carson Palmer before the season, too.

    after the season? not so much. buh bye

  • RaiderRockstar

    Frank Vogel is a jackass.

    I hope we sweep the Pacers

    Go Heat!!

  • nycraider

    if cp3 is that good, why did we only get a 7th rd pick for him

  • J Hill

    I hope we sweep the Pacers

    —————————————————————

    LOL @ “we”.

  • RaiderRockstar

    fans planning on showing up at Alameda for Woodsons arrival tomorrow?

    ***

    @hwnrdr

    is this for real? are you going?

  • RaiderRockstar
  • hwnrdr

    2160.RaiderRockstar Says:
    May 20th, 2013 at 6:22 am
    fans planning on showing up at Alameda for Woodsons arrival tomorrow?

    ***

    @hwnrdr

    is this for real? are you going?

    It was all over twitter yesterday…no, I’m not going. Its at noon supposedly

  • RaiderRockstar

    sorry Hwnrdr. I’ve been gone all weekend

    anything else I missed?

  • 00tt00

    RaiderRockstar Says:
    May 20th, 2013 at 6:10 am
    Reggie McKenzie, Dennis Allen & Greg Knapp talked up Carson Palmer before the season, too.
    —————-
    and palmer had a very good year despite them……..guaranteed palmer has a better year than any QBs on our staff

  • hwnrdr

    2163.RaiderRockstar Says:
    May 20th, 2013 at 6:32 am
    sorry Hwnrdr. I’ve been gone all weekend

    anything else I missed?

    No, not really, except that Freeney signed with SD

  • 00tt00

    2160.RaiderRockstar Says:
    May 20th, 2013 at 6:22 am
    fans planning on showing up at Alameda for Woodsons arrival tomorrow?
    ===========
    how stupid could those people be…….if anyone cant see that woodson is using oakland to try to get another team to jump into the mix they are blind…..he dont want to be here…he is trying to generate interest……he wants the 9ers or the donkeys to make an offer and went out of his way to try to get detroit to jump into the mix……..reggie would be an idiot to sign this guy…..we do not need an old safety….would rather wait for some june 1st cuts

  • RaiderRockstar

    Freeney signed with SD

    ***

    what!?!?

    that sucks. RIP Watson

  • hwnrdr

    I believe that even if Woodson is persuaded to return to Oakland, that Sir Charles is not going to give up on plays, and act like he didn’t want to be here. If he doesn’t come back, then I hope he goes to Detroit or Houston…anywhere but SF or Denver. But, the choice is his!

  • RaiderRockstar

    palmer had a very good year despite them

    ***

    Otto,

    palmer had a good season BECAUSE OF THEM

  • RaiderRockstar

    Otto,

    you probably said the same thing about Cribbs & Kluwe, that they “didnt want to be here” … but then they signed

    if CWood signs, I guess he’s in it to win it

    I’m sure he’s not hurting for money. He must still love football

  • J Hill

    .guaranteed palmer has a better year than any QBs on our staff

    ———————————————————————-

    SMH

    We will win more than 4 damn games this year. Take THAT to the bank.

    Which of course means the current QB will have done a better job than last year’s QB.

  • J Hill

    OTAs start in a couple hours.

    C Wood should be in the building TODAY if he wants a job.

  • guest123

    ProFootballTalk @ProFootballTalk 4m
    Bruce Arians says Carson Palmer was great in “a crazy situation” in Oakland http://wp.me/p14QSB-8WD8

    ^^^^^^^^^^^^

    Arians talks about Oakland as a crazy situation, and he’s not in Indy anymore. Does he realize there is no crazier situation in football than Arizona? They gave up most sacks (57) in the entire league last year.

    Carson’s last play for Oakland he got carted off with broken ribs. The Raiders only allowed 27 sacks last year. That’s a much saner situation than the bat-sheit crazy Cardinals situation. Their O-line sucks and they put a band aid on it in the offseason.

    Arians is in for a eye opener & re-definition of the meaning “a crazy situation”.

  • RaiderRockstar

    11 days until Huff’s contract comes off the books!

    what will we do with the money, besides sign all out draft picks?

    solidify the o-line by signing Brandon Moore & Eric Winston?

    solidify the d-line by signing John Abraham & Sedrick Ellis?

    solidify the secondary by signing Kerry Rhodes or Charles Woodson?

    add an “offensive playmaker” suck as Ahmad Bradshaw, Michael Turner, Beanie Wells, Laurent Robinson, Early Doucet or Ramses Barden ??

  • willy91137

    Good morning reader nation hundred and 10 days till football

    %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%POUND THE ROCK%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

    %%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%11 ANGRY MEN%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%%

  • RaiderRockstar

    OTAs start in a couple hours.

    ***

    @Jhill

    when is media granted access?

    isn’t it like every other Tuesday or something?

  • J Hill

    I think the coaches are going to see what Crawford, Bass, Moore, and Burris do as pass rushers before we spend the chips on an Abraham type guy

  • J Hill

    No idea, RRS.

  • guest123

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2013/05/20/dwight-freeney-confident-chargers-will-use-him-well/

    ^^^^^^^^^^^

    Tom Telesco called him a “perfect fit” for the team’s 3-4 defense.

    But Freeney is a 4-3 DE. But no matter the system, SD thinks they can fool everyone that Freeney was the play all along. Nevermind they lost last year’s first round pick Ingram to a season ending injury. That’s the way they are trying to spin the Freeney signing.

    Panic move by SD. Really overpaid for a situational player well past his prime, and not a system fit.

  • RaiderRockstar

    @G123

    the Cards HC said a few weeks before the draft that the AZ O-Line isn’t as bad as people think.

    they they drafted a guard in the Top 10, lol

  • guest123

    2174,

    none of the above. I believe Reggie keeps his hand in his pants.

  • http://www.actionext.com/playlist_57486.html La Milicia Negra

    last game of the season!, win or draw and my team survive one season more in the highest league. Loss = relegation..

    so my brothers in SnB, wishes, hopes an prayers towards my team in yellow and blue will be appreciated..

    Forza Brondby!

  • guest123

    @ Rock,

    I hear that rookie guard ‘might’ be starting this season. Might.

    They think getting back Levi Brown is a big deal.

    57 sacks given up. Carson took 27 sacks or less and got his ribs broken and carted off IR.

    Cards will get Carson sacked 27 times by their bye week. Put him in a body bag!

  • jesusraiderjim

    Guest

    That’s better than Reggie keeping his hands in Marks pants.

    Or is it?

    Reg is not done he will make some more moves before the season starts with some cast-offs or some of these free agents waiting out there.

  • RaiderRockstar

    @G123

    SD overpaid for Freeney?

    what kind of contract did he get?

  • J Hill

    This is ALL about Flynn, Pryor, and Wilson!!!!!

    We get a STUD or 2 out of that group, and we are right back in this thing.

  • hwnrdr

    What’s up, LMN? How’s things in your part of the world?

  • guest123

    http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/9288979/dwight-freeney-agrees-contract-san-diego-chargers

    ^^^^^^^^^^

    freeney contract details inside.

    fwiw, it does look like the dischargers could kick him to the curb if he sucks in 2013 pretty easily and not get hurt on their cap in 14.

  • 1960AutumnWind

    OK

    I get that Palmer really did not want to be here, he was costing to much to be a bridge QB, and I agree with the trades to move on and all but just to stir the pot see the following article:

    http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2013/05/20/arians-palmer-was-great-in-a-crazy-situation-in-oakland/

    Basically it says at one point that Palmer was not the reason the Raiders lost 12 games last year. This I agree with and have said over and over. He was not the problem. The problem for Palmer though is he will be in a dangerous (vs. crazy) situation in AZ with a vertical offense and a bad line.

  • RaiderRockstar

    Cards will get Carson sacked 27 times by their bye week. Put him in a body bag!

    ***

    co-signed G123

    Palmer went from the weakest division to the toughest division in football. I predict a lot of pain & sleepless nights

    they call it “David Carr syndrome” renamed in 2006 as “Andrew Walter syndrome”

  • http://www.actionext.com/playlist_57486.html La Milicia Negra

    hwnrdr Says:
    May 20th, 2013 at 7:24 am

    What’s up, LMN? How’s things in your part of the world?
    __________________________________________________________

    intense, very intense.. worst season, fear relegation, but we have 2/3 odss in our favor. Win/Draw and we survive.. loss and I honestly dont know if im gonna cry :/

  • guest123

    lol jesusraiderjim

  • RaiderRockstar

    Freeney’s contract is for two years and has a base value of $8.75 million, league sources told ESPN’s Ed Werder. In 2013, he will make $5.75 million, including a $3.25 million signing bonus and $1.5 million in base salary, the sources said. The deal includes an estimated $4.5 million incentive package over the two years.

    ***

    thanks GMoney!

    seems like a lot of dough for a player who MIGHT be a difference maker

  • http://www.actionext.com/playlist_57486.html La Milicia Negra

    30 minutes till kickoff, gents, im out.. wish me and my team luck =)

    see ya gents!

  • http://000 Bob Marley

    * Saints GM Mickey Loomis says Will Smith will start off at outside linebacker in OTAs.

    “Smith is 6-foot-3, 282 pounds. It’s a comical attempt to fit Smith into the Saints’ new 3-4 defense, and an experiment almost certain to end in failure. Aside from a few snaps at weak-side linebacker as a rookie, Smith has spent his entire career as a base 4-3 end. Due a non-guaranteed $3 million after restructuring his contract, Smith is a candidate for trade or release.”

    *****************************************************+

    Smith is going to be 32 and he hasn’t played that well lately, bu if he’s released DA coached him for 2 years as the Asst. DL coach for NO, maybe he can talk him into coming here for a chance to start at RDE, he won’t find a better shot anywhere else.

  • jesusraiderjim

    Whatever I just don’t want Reggies hand placement to lead to any stupid slogans like:

    “Put Your Pants”
    “Keep Your Hands Outta My Pants”
    “Hands In Your Own Pants”

    You get what I’m sayin?

  • J Hill

    WTF does anyone expect Palmer’s new HC to say??????

    Geeze

  • http://000 Bob Marley

    Freeney is a Charger.

    Not worried about it, he did well in waiting, Ingram’s loss probably forced the Chargers hand and I’m guessing he ended up getting more money from them than what other teams were offering.

    Versatile DE-DT Israel Idonije, DE Juqua Parker and Edge-Rusher Trevor Scott are still available and we can get them for a lot less money.

    None of those guys would start, but Idonije would see a ton of snaps inside and outside, he’s durable and has 20 sacks over the last 3 years, 7 last year which is more than Freeney’s 5, they are the same age.

    Juqua Parker had 6.5 sacks as a pass-rushing specialist for the Browns last year, again more than Freeney, he’s 35 and probably a 1 year guy, but I would take 6 or 7 sacks from the guy, we’ll need every single one we can get.

    Trevor Scott is the one who intrigues me the most, he appears to be healthy again and played well in limited time for NE last year (22% of snaps), he’s still only 28 and could revive his career here, turn into a pass-rush specialist who can give you 5-7 sacks a year rushing from the edge.

    Scott can do what Dave Tollefson was supposed to do for us last year and didn’t, then again Tollefson never showed true pass-rush skills, he was more of a high-motor guy, Scott has always been able to get pressure when on the field, he’s a natural.

  • J Hill

    for a chance to start at RDE,

    ———————————————————————-

    To start??????

    Can’t see that.

  • J Hill

    That Red Bull commercial is helluva!

    Crazy arsse mofo’s, lol.