Interesting choice of words, but the point was they didn’t care about having a gay teammate as long as they could play.
Only a few players like Adrian Peterson are homophobic to the point it would make them uncomfortable to have a gay teammate. In fact, most locker rooms are very aware who their gay teammates are and just prefer to keep it in house, so it doesn’t become a circus.
Here are a few of the 93 Houston Oilers talking about their experiences with a gay teammate via the LA Times.
“Everybody knew certain guys” were gay, former cornerback Cris Dishman told the Houston Chronicle. “Everybody speculated and people used to see these two guys come in by themselves. They’d leave at lunchtime and then come back.”
But Dishman added that both players were valued for their contributions on the field and that showering with them around was “no big deal.”
Former linebacker Lamar Lathon agreed.
“Listen, those guys that we’re talking about were unbelievable teammates. And if you wanted to go to war with someone, you would get those guys first. Because I have never seen tougher guys than those guys,” Lathon said. “And everybody in the locker room, the consensus knew or had an idea that things were not exactly right. But guess what? When they strapped the pads on and got on the field, man, we were going to war with these guys because they were unbelievable.”
I honestly don’t believe it would be an issue if a player came out publicly with their teammates. I don’t think their teammates would care and probably already knew. I think the issue would be the unnecessary attention and circus atmosphere it would bring to the team. From what I have been told the gay players in major sports don’t want attention like Jason Collins. They want just to play and live their lives privately out of the spotlight. They want to be known for what they do on the field, not in the bedroom.