Five months after appearing on "The View" to support a 13-year-old boy who had been attacked by classmates, Eagles Pro Bowl receiver DeSean Jackson is making off-the-field headlines of a different nature.
And he's taken a defensive stance in the aftermath.
Jackson, appearing on a hip-hop radio show late last month, used a multiword gay slur in response to a berating caller.
Jackson took calls on Sirius XM's "All Out Show with Rude Jude and Lord Sear" on June 30, replying in passing to a derogatory question about Jackson's toughness. Jackson responded, "What kind of question is that?" followed by the gay slurs.
Jackson issued a statement Saturday, saying he meant no harm.
"In a recent radio interview a caller got really confrontational with me," Jackson said through a spokesperson. "I got very heated with the caller, took it a bit too far and did not mean to offend anybody. I meant no disrespect and a better choice of words was needed."
Responding presumably to accounts of his comments in the media, Jackson took to Twitter on Friday night, saying he was "standing tall" despite the negative publicity.
Deadspin.com first reported the comments, with audio provided by DCFanatic.com.
In his cryptic Twitter-style message written in all capital letters, Jackson wrote: "They looking to take ya down at all times no matter how positive and what you do! It's always a way they try to get ya. I'm standing tall."
Jackson also wrote: "Wanna bring me down but I'm OK. They trying to knock me off but I'm still on!"
One of the show's hosts, "Rude" Jude, told Deadspin he hoped the star receiver didn't apologize, characterizing the exchange as a joke.
Jackson "is a hood dude," and for "hood cats," Jude said, according to the website.
"I don't think he's homophobic," Jude said, according to Deadspin. "He's joking."
In February, Jackson was featured on ABC's "The View" in a surprise appearance during a show about Nadin Khoury, a boy who had been bullied by schoolmates.
Jackson was voted to the Pro Bowl in 2009 and 2010. He has 3,135 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns in three seasons.
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell consistently has stated that players are subject to review and discipline under the personal-conduct policy for potential violations even during the current lockout.
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello, contacted by ESPN Saturday morning, said: "We will decline comment at this time."
Information from ESPN senior NFL analyst Chris Mortensen was used in this report.