On Sunday, Michael Sam made headlines around the country when he came out as gay. If drafted, as projected, he will be the first openly gay player in the NFL. While some people reacted poorly to the news, Sam has racked up plenty of support in the football world. See who’s standing with Sam below.
Dick Cass, Baltimore Ravens president
“We’re all about winning. If he’s a good football player who can help us win games, he will be welcomed here,” he said. “I’m disappointed it is such a big issue in 2014.”
John Elway, Denver Broncos executive
“I applaud Michael Sam and wish him the very best as he continues the pursuit of his NFL dream,” he told 7SPORTS. “We will evaluate Michael just like any other draft prospect — on the basis of his ability, character and NFL potential. His announcement will have no effect on how we see him as a football player.”
John Mara and Steve Tisch, New York Giants co-owners
“Our sport, our game, is the ultimate meritocracy. You earn your way with your ability. As Patrick Burke and Wade Davis constantly remind all of us, regardless of who you are, what your background is and what your personal or sexual orientation is, if you can play, you can play. Michael’s announcement will not affect his position on our draft board,” said Mara.
“Michael Sam is a gifted athlete and a courageous man,” Tisch said. “I hope any NFL team would not hesitate to draft Michael if he is right for their team. Our game is the ultimate team game, and we often talk about how a team is a family. Regardless of where you are from, what your religious beliefs are, what your sexual orientation is, if you are good enough to be on the team, you are part of the family.”
Robert Kraft, Patriots owner
“We’re about winning,” Kraft told the Boston Herald. “And anyone who can come in here and help us win, I personally don’t care what their ethnic background is, their racial background, the gender preference. If they can help us win, and they’re about team first, then I’m happy to have him here… I think it’s good for America.”