The worlds of football and politics have intersected many times over the past few decades. As a result, many who plied their trade on the gridiron have not been shy about making political statements, especially in the last few years.
Many have gone a step further by entering politics. Some of these football greats — not shy about publicly professing their Christian faith — have also used their religious beliefs to inform their politics and run for office.
The latest Christian to enter the political fray is former running back Herschel Walker. A controversial candidate, the 60-year-old Walker, a member of the 1992 US bobsled team, played with five NFL teams in the late 1980s and early ’90s. He is currently running for the US Senate in Georgia.
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“I’ve worked on every campaign in Georgia, virtually, since 1976,” Faith & Freedom founder Ralph Reed told Politico. “I’ve never seen a candidate that open about his faith, ever, on the Republican side.”
Here are five Christian football stars who entered the political arena:
Ford came to prominence in the 1970s, a different era in American politics compared to today, and reached the pinnacle of his career in 1974 when he was sworn in as president. As a result, he became the only president never to have been elected to the office of president or vice president.
Ford previously served as the leader of the Republican Party in the US House of Representatives and appointed vice president in 1973. When Richard Nixon resigned in 1974, Ford succeeded him to the presidency.