Though he wasn't as outspoken as former teammate Brendon Ayanbadejo or current Raiders punter Chris Kluwe, former Ravens center Matt Birk let it be known last year that he has an interest in politics.
Now that he's retired from football after winning a Super Bowl, some others have taken an interest in Birk perhaps running for public office.
He's not commented on reports that he met with the Republican National Senatorial Committee, but Birk said he's been discussing all kinds of possible candidacies.
“Kind of the whole gamut. Governor, [U.S.] senator,” Birk told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “The term ‘public servant' -- that's appealing to me. There is something about the idea I still find romantic.”
And there's no question he's not afraid to say what he believes is right.
He declined an invitation to celebrate with his Super Bowl winning team at the White House because he disagreed with President Obama's stance on abortion, saying, “I am active in the pro-life movement, and I just felt like I couldn't deal with that.”
Birk also has discussed his objection to gay marriage, writing in an editorial last October to the Minneapolis Star Tribune, “Same-sex unions may not affect my marriage specifically, but it will affect my children -- the next generation … The effects of no-fault divorce, adultery, and the nonchalant attitude toward marriage by some have done great harm to this sacred institution. How much longer do we put the desires of adults before the needs of kids? Why are we not doing more to lift up and strengthen the institution of marriage?”
As Democratic Senator Al Franken -- the (intentionally) funniest man in Congress -- gears up for his reelection bid, Republicans reportedly are hoping Birk might be the man to try to challenge him. So far, Birk hasn't been public about his interest.
“In politics, you always want to hear people say, ‘No, absolutely not, under no circumstances.' And then you want to see them repeat it publicly about five times,” Republican party chair Pat Shortridge told the paper. “Until they've absolutely, positively ruled it out, you don't want to leave a potentially good candidate on the sidelines.”
Sounds like the Republican party, at some point, will have the chance to see if Birk is one of those potentially strong candidates. And considering he's well-spoken and already famous, it's hard not to like his chances to make an impact somewhere in the political world.