This year, Lonnie Ballentine was last to be drafted to the
NFL.This last place draft spot is
referred to as Mr. Irrelevant. I know Lonnie worked hard for that spot but I
wonder if Michael Sam, the first openly drafted gay person to the NFL, will be
the one who earns the title. For the sake of world advancement and common
sense, I hope not.
After Michael Sam's stock dropped after coming out as a gay
man, he was finally drafted in the seventh and last round of the NFL draft, 249th
overall. He was very close to the last draft slot, missing the Mr. Irrelevancy
title by only 7 draft picks.
I am happy that the St. Louis Rams drafted Sam, although he
deserved to be drafted much higher.
Or did he?
Was this selection necessary due to the backlash of not drafting Sam? Not drafting Sam
would have caused much bigger issues for the NFL.This somehow feels like a cover your ass NFL draft pick.
Was Michael Sam being drafted late a pity selection?
The only thing pitiful here is that being drafted to St.
Louis may hurt Sam in the long run. He could easily not make the team; people
don't make a team all the time.If
Michael was not drafted, he would have had more teams to choose from that need
his services as a player, not as a homosexual PR agenda. Don't get me wrong, I
am not saying that St. Louis drafted Michael as a PR agenda; maybe they REALLY
have a genuine interest in his ability to play the game.But being gay hasn't hurt jersey sales as
Michael Sam is the number two selling jersey.
I, like many, want to see Sam have a long and prosperous
career.Rooting for the underdog is the
American way. Sadly, sexual orientation places him as the underdog and is also
the American way. It would be un-American to see him being used as an example of
how far the NFL has come; I hope this is not the case. It would have been best
for Michael not to have been drafted because his chances of making St. Louis
team diminished due to where in the draft Sam was drafted.
Was Michael Sam drafted to NOT make the NFL?
There is something to be said about timing.Maybe one day, a gay person will simply be
gay and will not have to "come out" ever. Their sexual orientation would be
known by acting like the human being they are. This "coming out" wouldn't even
need to be announced, simply known. (Like Liberace, come on-we all knew!I joke, even if a gay person doesn't "act
gay" doesn't mean they aren't, but having a significant other of the same sex
is a giveaway)
My experience playing professional basketball with a gay
teammate or opponent is limited, as far as I know. I played professional
basketball against John Amaechi.John is
a very nice man and everything that I remember about him; he is a gentleman,
smart and caring.John came out as gay after
his professional career had ended. Is this perfect timing?
I did not play with or against openly gay NBA player Jason
Collins as he is younger than I and our paths did not cross on the court. The
timing of Jason's announcement is interesting too. Late in his career he used
his sexual orientation as a way to extend his waning career.Why did you choose to wait Jason? Would you
have not had a career if you announced at the beginning like Sam? The Brooklyn Nets took in Collins and there seems
not to be a problem."He is gay, so
what?" seems to be the sediment. Is this perfect timing?
I wonder if the timing of Jason Collin's announcement was
such that he will have a platform to find work promoting acceptance of
homosexuals in sports after his playing career. If so, then Jason is quite
creative, as transitioning after a professional sports career is difficult for
any pro athlete.
But to announce that you are gay BEFORE the draft is a
totally different approach, Sam.
Take Brittney Griner, and her timing to announce being gay
as another example.
Brittney Griner timed her coming out party after being
drafted No. 1 to the WNBA.Should have
Michael Sam came out the same way, after the draft?Is this perfect timing? (Seemed to be for
Where would Michael Sam been drafted if he did not announce
he was gay before the draft? One of two things would have happened.
Either Mr. Sam would not have been drafted at all, or, he
would have been drafted much higher.
Good luck to you Michael Sam.I hope you turn this draft pick into a 10-year
successful career.We all wait to see
how this/you/Rams/NFL/Hall of Fame plays out.