Vikings release Chris Kluwe

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If Chris Kluwe was not an outspoken supporter of gay rights, his departure from the Minnesota Vikings probably would not create near the stir.

But Kluwe, in eight seasons with the Vikings, was vocal on a lot of topics, including the poor field condition at TCF Bank Stadium when the team had a regular-season game moved there late in the 2010 season after the Metrodome roof had collapsed. He was also very outspoken about gay marriage rights and more.

Today, he is an ex-Viking as the team did what was expected nine days after drafting Jeff Locke in the fifth round from UCLA. To focus solely on Kluwe’s causes off the field would be to miss the point that he struggled with consistency on the field, particularly when away from the Metrodome.

Thank you to all the fans, my teammates, and the Wilf family for the past 8.5 years. I wouldn't have traded it for anything,” Kluwe announced via his Twitter page.

Kluwe leaves as the Vikings’ leader in career punting average at 44.4 yards per. He owns the franchis record with 198 punts downed inside the 20.

Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs

Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune

Follow me on Twitter: @BradBiggs

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