The Aegis
Harford County

Players sexuality shouldn't matter in the NFL [Commentary]

I have to be quite honest.

This is one of those Tuesday mornings where information for this column just has not surfaced to the front of my brain. In fact, it seems it hasn't found its way into any part of my brain.


Anyway, here's something.

With much anticipation, many of us were glued to our smart phones or to the nearest television late last week as the NFL held its annual draft, which makes a lot of fans happy and a lot of young a whole lot richer. They're happy, too.


So, picks come in, some are traded and with each and every one of them, someone is extremely pleased, while countless others continue to worry as the number of picks dwindle by round and number.

We all know that some months ago it became widely and very well known that a college football player, one Michael Sam, was coming out as a gay athlete who was hoping to play football in the NFL.

When Sam made his announcement, seems to me it was received very well by athletes in general and by those who operate within the NFL.

If you were paying any attention to the final handful of picks during Saturday's seventh and final round, you either saw, or like me, heard later, that Sam was drafted by the St. Louis Rams with the 249th overall pick. Sam is a 6-2, 261-pound defensive end from Missouri and to my knowledge, the only known gay player in the draft.

Since that pick was made, videos of Sam's reaction when the news came to him by phone, have been played over and over by numerous media outlets. The videos show Sam and boyfriend kissing, rubbing cake in each other's face and kissing some more. And bi-racial at that.

Seems we have gotten past the race issue, but the gay matter is still a really hot one for many.

The Aegis: Top stories

The Aegis: Top stories


Daily highlights from Harford County's number one source for local news.

Unsolicited, I've heard people say "that's enough, quit showing the video" and "Sam got more time than the number one overall pick Jadeveon Clowney." He's also a defensive end.

I saw the video and while once is enough for me, I have bigger questions on the matter.


Here's the reality. I say again, Sam was the 249th player chosen. There were just seven players taken after Sam and the draft was over.

So, why did St. Louis take a chance on Sam? Why did it take the Rams' next to last pick in the draft?

Sam's draft grade was 5.1. Lots of players fall between 5.01 and 5.19 and what exactly does that mean? Players with grades in that range are known as "Better-than-average, chance to make NFL roster."

The big question is, was Sam taken so late because of his 5.1 grade or simply because he's gay? The answer is one we will likely and truthfully never know.

The other question is, does it matter? The answer is, it can't.