RAMS RELEASE MICHAEL SAM, BUT HE COULD RETURN TO PRACTICE SQUAD
The St. Louis Rams released Michael Sam on Saturday, the team announced. The defensive lineman is the first and currently only openly gay player in the league.
As a seventh-round pick, Sam was a longshot to make the Rams roster since they are already stacked with proven players at the defensive linemen position.
“I want to thank the entire Rams organization and the city of St. Louis for giving me this tremendous opportunity and allowing me to show I can play at this level,” Sam tweeted after finding out about his release. “I look forward to continuing to build on the progress I made here toward a long and successful career. The most worthwhile things in life rarely come easy, this is a lesson I’ve always known. The journey continues.”
Coach Jeff Fisher’s decision came down to carrying either nine or 10 defensive lineman on the team’s 53-man roster and the team decided to go with nine, leaving Sam as the odd man out.
But Sam’s NFL career isn’t over yet. The 24-year-old could still end up back in St. Louis on the Rams’ practice squad or could be picked up by one of the other 31 teams.
Sam was pretty confident after the Rams final preseason game on Thursday that he’d be playing somewhere this year: “I’m very confident I’ll be on an NFL roster this fall,” Sam said.
In four preseason games, Sam tallied 11 tackles and three sacks. (Photo: Lynne Sladky/Associated Press)