The new cast was announced late last week and includes Bachelorette star Charity Lawson, celebrity sibling Jamie Lynn Spears, How I Met Your Mother‘s Alyson Hannigan, entrepreneur and reality star Mauricio Umansky, Oscar-winning actress Mira Sirvino, and actor Barry Williams, who played Greg Brady on the long-running classic TV sitcom The Brady Bunch.
Peterson’s selection has already drawn controversy. He’s paired with dance pro Brit Stewart, who is dating deaf actor Daniel Durant. The two competed together on Season 31.
The running back, best known for his years as a Minnesota Viking, was convicted of misdemeanor reckless assault in 2014, after a spanking injured his then 4-year-old son.
In 2022, after he and his wife, Ashley, got into a verbal altercation on a plane, he was charged with suspicion of domestic violence. Ashley later took to Instagram to say the couple’s argument never got physical, but Peterson agreed to six months of alcohol and domestic violence counseling.
Not only did angry commenters post on Stewart’s Instagram, but former DWTS pro Sharna Burgess also made her issues with Peterson’s casting known.
“There’s one person that I’d like to share that I’m really shocked is on there is Adrian Peterson, the football player…,” Burgess said, who was not asked back to the show after 14 seasons. “The man has been charged with child abuse of his 4-year-old son in the way that he punishes him and that is just devastating for me,” she said on the Old-ish podcast.
There’s been no response to the backlash from Peterson or anyone from DWTS yet. Football stars have been popular on the show since its debut on ABC in 2005.
Former Dallas Cowboy Emmitt Smith won with Cheryl Burke, Former Pittsburgh Steeler Hines Ward won with dance pro partner Kym Johnson, Donald Driver took the mirrorball trophy with Peta Murgatroyd, and Rashad Jennings won with Emma Slater.
In 2016, Burgess was paired with controversial wide receiver Antonio Brown, but this was before most of the controversy began with the former NFL player, who won a Super Bowl ring with Tampa Bay.
DeMarcus Ware, Jacoby Jones and Von Miller are other NFL stars that have appeared on DWTS.
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