EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — David Tyree’s tenure in the Giants’ front office is off to a bumpy start.
The Super Bowl hero was hired as New York’s director of player development on Tuesday. The Human Rights Campaign ripped the move, criticizing the Giants for bringing on a former player who once tweeted “there is no scientific evidence to support the claim of being born gay.”
Tyree also said in 2011 that he’d trade his championship ring to stop gay marriage.
“When did Tyree decide to be straight?” Human Rights Campaign president Chad Griffin said in a statement, according to ESPN. “The idea that someone can change their sexual orientation or gender identity is ludicrous, and the New York Giants are risking their credibility by hiring someone who publicly advocates this junk science. His opposition to basic legal equality aside, David Tyree’s proselytizing of such dangerous practices goes against the positive work the Giants organization has done in recent years.”
In a statement, the franchise responded that the retired wideout “was expressing his personal view, and that is not the view of the Giants organization.”
Tyree received support from LGBT advocate Wade Davis II, a former pro who serves as executive director of the You Can Play Project.
Tyree’s spectacular catch against his helmet was a key play in the team’s 2008 Super Bowl upset of undefeated New England. He replaced Charles Way, who became the head of the NFL’s Player Engagement Department earlier this month.
The 34-year-old Tyree played for the Giants from 2003-08. He spent the last two years working in player engagement and development at the NFL office.
He will handle programs focusing on career transition, player assistance, and training and development.
Tyree called returning to the Giants “a second homecoming.”
“I’m grateful to be an example and hopefully represent this great organization in the same light,” he said. “I’m just thrilled to get in here and serve these players.”
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