Michael Sam's Canadian Football League career isn't off to the best start. Actually, it hasn't had much of a start. Sam hasn't practiced with the Montreal Alouettes since Thursday and left the team on Friday to fly to Texas for "personal reasons," FoxSports.com is reporting. The Alouettes will play their first preseason game on Saturday. Alouettes coach Sam Higgins said he was surprised by Sam's absent, especially since he did attend team meetings on Thursday. "This surprises me right now. I thought he would have been out here," Higgins said. Sam, the first openly-gay player to be drafted into the NFL, signed a two-year deal with the Alouettes in May.
Michael Sam signed a two-year deal with the CFL's Montreal Alouettes on Friday. The former joint SEC Defensive Player of the Year participated in the NFL's first-ever veterans combine earlier this year, where he was confident he would be playing professional football again. "I am very excited and proud to join the Montreal Alouettes and want to thank team Owner Robert Wetenhall, General Manager Jim Popp and Head Coach Tom Higgins for this opportunity," Sam said. "I cannot wait to put on the pads, get back on the field and work hard each and every day with my teammates to bring a Grey Cup to the great fans here in Montreal." Sam was drafted in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Rams before the team ultimately cut him. He joined the Cowboys' practice squad before being released in October. CBSSports.com NFL Insider Jason La Canfora first reported Sam's signing.
Free-agent defensive end/outside linebacker Michael Sam ran unofficial times of 5.02 and 5.03 seconds in the 40-yard dash at Sunday's NFL veteran combine, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Those times are likely to make it difficult for a team to bring him on in the short term. However, Sam is taking an optimistic approach when it comes to a team bringing him on the roster. "Absolutely, I think my chances are high," Sam said, via the Associated Press. "As long as I have that will to play the game and I am healthy, you'll continue to see me trying to play in this league. I am very confident I will be playing football somewhere." Sam said playing in the Canadian Football League is an option too. Sam became the first openly gay player in NFL history to be drafted when the Rams selected him in the seventh round a year ago. Sam did not make the Rams 53-man roster out of training camp and spent some time on the Cowboys' practice squad before being waived in October. Sam was among 105 NFL veterans participated in the first-ever veteran combine. "I'm young and I'm still good," Sam said. "I don't have any injuries. I'm going to play."
Although he's a year removed from the draft, free agent defensive end Michael Sam was granted permission and received an invite to the NFL's inaugural veteran combine in Arizona on March 22, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports. Sam was selected in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Rams after being named the SEC co-Defensive Player of the Year. He didn't survive final preseason cuts and spent seven weeks on the Cowboys' practice squad before being released. He'll workout with roughly 100 veteran free agents in front of representatives from all 32 teams.
Free-agent defensive end Michael Sam indicated in a documentary on the Oprah Winfrey Network that aired Saturday night that coming out was the right thing to do and that he has no regrets with how he handled the situation, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. "I did everything I was supposed to do. I did everything right," Sam said. "I am proud of how I handled things." Sam dismissed the notion that his sexuality cost him a spot on an NFL team, adding, "But I do believe I'm a very talented football player and I'm going to continue working hard and try to get that opportunity to play in the league." Sam was selected in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Rams after being named the SEC co-Defensive Player of the Year. He didn't survive final preseason cuts and spent seven weeks on the Cowboys' practice squad before being released.