Ex-NFL kicker Jay Feely says gun-toting prom photo was a ‘joke’

It did not go over well.


Chris Tognotti

Internet Culture

Published Apr 22, 2018   Updated May 21, 2021, 5:50 pm CDT

On Saturday, former NFL kicker Jay Feely shared a photo on Twitter of his daughter and her boyfriend preparing for their high school prom. But one detail in the photo sparked controversy and drew several outraged reactions―a gun clenched in Feely’s hand.

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The photo was apparently meant to be a joke, in the mold of countless “you better not mess with my daughter”—style dad memes. But it nonetheless drew a lot of criticism on the grounds that it’s not the best time to be joking about gun violence, much less against a teenager.



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Not everyone was offended, to be clear, as some people just saw it as a relatively harmless joke. It’s also worth noting that Feely’s daughter and her boyfriend have been dating for more than a year, according to what Feely said in an explanatory tweet on Sunday. Feely also maintained that both his daughter and her boyfriend knew he was joking, and that the gun was unloaded and had no clip.

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Feely, 41, last played football for the Chicago Bears in 2015. Since then, he’s made his career as a sports commentator. He’s made no secret of his political conservatism throughout the years, having been an occasional guest on Fox News host Sean Hannity’s show. Judging by his response to the criticism of his gun-toting prom photo, however, it seems as if this was not the kind of publicity he wanted.

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*First Published: Apr 22, 2018, 5:06 pm CDT