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Michael Sam dropped by NFL because ‘no one wants the distraction’
Michael Sam is no longer attached to an NFL team and none of them appear to want to pick him up because his sexual orientation causes too much distraction, claims a Buffalo Bills star.
Offensive lineman Eric Wood goes on, more specifically, to blame the media for focusing on the personal life of the NFL’s first openly gay draft pick.
‘Blame that on espn,’ Wood tweeted in response to Sam’s inability to find an NFL home. ‘No one wants the distraction.’
Wood’s comment came after sports commentator Ross Tucker publicly wondered on Twitter why ‘Michael Sam performed much better than most expected and still isn’t even on a practice squad?’
The comments also hark back to ESPN’s report on Sam’s locker room habits earlier this month and their subsequent apology.
Instead of focusing on the St. Louis Rams’ first round of cuts, reporter Josina Anderson chose to feature Sam’s shower etiquette.
‘Another Rams defensive player told me that “Sam is respecting our space” and that, from his perspective, he seems to think that Michael Sam is kind of waiting to take a shower, as not to make his teammates feel uncomfortable,’ Anderson said.
The reporter said she also asked other players about Sam’s showering schedule.
After public outcry, ESPN spokesman Josh Krulewitz wrote in a statement that the network ‘regrets the manner in which we presented our report.’
‘Clearly, yesterday we collectively failed to meet the standards we have set in reporting on LGBT-related topics in sports,’ he added.
While getting cut by the St. Louis Rams means Sam’s dreams of becoming the first gay NFL player have now been placed on hold, he was undeterred.
He posted a message of positivity to his Twitter account over the weekend despite his obstacles.
‘The most worthwhile things in life rarely come easy, this is a lesson I’ve always known. The journey continues,’ he wrote.
His boyfriend, Vito Cammisano, also showed his support for Sam by tweeted a picture of the couple together, wearing shirts from the University of Missouri, where they both attended college.
Sam showed up for his face-to-face exit meeting with St. Louis Rams coach Jeff Fisher, a few hours after clearing waivers.
Sam arrived at Rams Park via through the media entrance Sunday afternoon still looking right at home clad in T-shirt, shorts and flip flips. He shook hands with two reporters and accepted well wishes but declined further comment before heading upstairs to see the coach who wasn’t afraid to add the first openly gay player to the roster.
All 21 players released Saturday cleared waivers. Sam’s future was a major topic on Twitter, some of it vitriol, some reasoned.
The Rams appeared unlikely to re-sign Sam to the 10-player practice squad because the defensive line is their strongest unit and they need help elsewhere.