Michael Sam: Barrier-breaking status becomes NFL 'test case'

Discussion in 'Sports' started by thisnumbersdisconnected, Feb 11, 2014.

?

Michael Sam should ...

Poll closed Aug 10, 2014.
  1. ... have stayed in the closet

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. ... have 'come,' out just as he did

    50.0%
  3. ... have passed up the NFL and become a gay rights activist

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. ... just play football and be who he is, without fanfare

    50.0%
  5. ... done something else (explain in post, please).

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. thisnumbersdisconnected

    thisnumbersdisconnected
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    I like Michael Sam as a person and as a DE for Mizzou these last four years. I came to know of him first as a football player and then as a student athlete who does massive amounts of charity work in and around Columbia. It surprised me when he made his "outing" Sunday, but my reaction was less surprising to me: It didn't make any difference to me.

    I've always made the commitment to show them love and share the gospel when given the opportunity. Sam makes it possible to see them more than a victim of their own error. He is a highly intelligent, very talented young man. What did surprise me was the reaction of several mock draft preparers. Many of them dropped him out of his long-time projection as a late second- to early fourth-round selection,, some by as many as 70 spots on their boards. Because he's gay? How does that make him a less talented DE? Obviously, it doesn't.

    More importantly, how does it reflect on the NFL's attitude toward gays? It seems those mock drafters believe Sam will be a distraction for any team that selects him. Well, I'd say that goes without saying. Sam is taking a great risk in making his sexual preference known.

    Did he need to do that? Debatable. If we think there aren't "unknown" gay men in pro sports locker rooms all over the U.S., we're being naïve. They've kept it hidden, though undoubtedly a few of their trusted teammates know.

    Why wouldn't Sam just join the crowd in the closet? I find I can't answer that question, and no one is going to ask it publicly, because it isn't "politically correct." What are your thoughts?
     
    #1 thisnumbersdisconnected, Feb 11, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2014
  2. ccrobinson

    ccrobinson
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    I agree with every single thing you've said.

    I don't know enough about his skills to say whether he'll be good or not, but being defensive player of the year in the SEC means something. If he's that good, then I have zero problems with him playing for the Bears.
     
  3. InTheLight

    InTheLight
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    Also agree with everything you said except for the part about gay teammates being known to "only a few trusted teammates." I've heard that most teams are aware that there are gay players in the NFL and most players know who they are. And they don't care.

    I think 6' 2" for a defensive end is probably too small for the NFL but if he's as athletic as they say he is there is a future as a special teams player or maybe even as a linebacker (don't know, as I've never seen him play.) Those draft "experts" that have dropped him on their boards because they found out he was gay are idiots. BTW, I heard that he told his teammates he was gay earlier in the season and they were able to keep it a secret for him, allowing him to make the announcement. TND, is that correct?

    I'm really surprised that this subject is dominating ESPN TV, sports internet sites, and sports talk radio. It's newsworthy, but is it really news? I mean, he's the first openly gay football player. All right. I understand. I figure there is about 40-50 gay NFL football players still in the closet. Can we move on now?
     
  4. thisnumbersdisconnected

    thisnumbersdisconnected
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    Obviously I've probably seen him play more than anyone on the board, but I think, despite my being a Mizzou fan, I could project him as a good outside linebacker for several teams in the NFL. He'll need to put some weight on, but I think he already knows that.
    Yes, he told them in summer camp last August, asking them to keep it among the team because he didn't want to distract from what he thought even then was going to be an outstanding season for Missouri, nor did he want it coming out prior to Signing Day last week, which I'm not sure was a real concern, given he wouldn't be with the team when this year's recruits show up for summer drills.
    It is a bit much, isn't it? But while there may be a bunch in the closet, he's the only one out in the hallway so far, so he's going to be the subject -- or the target, depending on what any one commentator's agenda is.
     

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