Most NFL observers were shocked to discover St. Louis Rams rookie Michael Sam planned to participate in a documentary on Oprah Winfrey’s network about his attempt to become the NFL’s first openly gay player.
Apparently, Rams coaches and front office personnel were also caught off guard.
Rams coach Jeff Fisher admitted his team was unaware of the deal Sam struck with OWN before drafting the former Missouri standout in the seventh round. The series was shelved on Friday after a meeting with general manager Les Snead, executive vice president Kevin Demoff and Fisher.
"I think the Oprah thing, it caught us off-guard," Fisher said (via the SportingNews.com). "Whenever it takes place, I think it'll be a positive piece."
There might be a time and place for the documentary, but not this summer.
"Not good for the locker room," Fisher said (via the SportingNews.com). "Nor Mike to get involved at this point."
Hopefully, Sam, and his handlers, learned the importance of making football a priority before cashing in on the one thing he did not want to be known for – his sexual orientation. A little full disclosure to your boss in the future probably will not hurt either.
If Sam makes the 53-man roster, the recent backlash from fans and teammates will be a footnote, and many will celebrate his achievement.
However, Sam has not made the team, and it is easier to obtain that goal by not putting your supervisors in awkward situations.
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- Jeff Fisher
- St. Louis Rams
- Michael Sam
- Oprah Winfrey