The Denver Broncos will not be contributing to the It Gets Better campaign this season, team officials announced Tuesday.
After 8,000 people signed a petition to get the team, including quarterback Tim Tebow, to contribute a video to the campaign, a spokesman told the Huffington Post that they would instead take part in another campaign that the NFL is contributing to.
"The Denver Broncos are committed to tolerance, acceptance and respect for all in the community," spokesman Patrick Smyth said to the Post. "The National Football League is currently working with USA Network on its 'Characters Unite' campaign combating prejudice and intolerance, and our organization is in full support of that movement to help raise awareness for this very important cause."
While petition creator and Broncos fan Andy Szekeres said he is glad the Broncos are doing something to promote acceptance, the Characters Unite campaign is not the same as It Gets Better.
"The Broncos have a rare opportunity to make a difference and give hope to thousands of LGBT youth across the country as the first NFL team to make an It Gets Better Video," he said. "I think I can speak for the thousands of people who signed this petition when I urge the Broncos to show the country that Colorado and the Broncos stand against bullying LGBT teens and youth."
Furthermore, several Major League Baseball teams have made videos for Dan Savage's campaign, including the Chicago Cubs, Boston Red Sox, and the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Before signing with the Broncos, Tebow was a Heisman trophy winner known for his religious devotion. Last year, he and his mother starred in a controversial Super Bowl commercial for antigay group Focus on the Family decrying abortion. Now that he's playing for the NFL, his religious nature has thrust him into the spotlight, in addition to his skills on the field.