Sam on Gay Players: ‘A Lot of Us’

Sam on Gay Players: ‘A Lot of Us’

In this Sept. 7, 2014, file photo, Dallas Cowboys Michael Sam, center, talks on the field before the start of an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys have released Michael Sam from the practice squad, Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014, another setback as the NFL’s first openly gay player tries to make an active roster during the regular season for the first time. (AP Photo/LM Otero, File)
In this Sept. 7, 2014, file photo, Dallas Cowboys Michael Sam, center, talks on the field before the start of an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys have released Michael Sam from the practice squad, Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014, another setback as the NFL’’s first openly gay player tries to make an active roster during the regular season for the first time. (AP Photo/LM Otero, File)

 

(ESPN) – Michael Sam may be the first openly gay player to be selected in the NFL draft, but he said Thursday that there are more gay players in the NFL.

“I am not the only gay person in the NFL,” Sam said during a speech and Q&A session in Dallas on Thursday, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I’m just saying there is a lot of us. I respect the players that did reach out to me and had the courage to tell me that they were also gay, but they do not have the same courage as I do to come out before I even played a down in the NFL.

“Was it a risky move? Yes. But at that moment, the reason why I came out is I thought it wasn’t going to be a big deal. Maybe I was naive. Maybe I thought it was 2014, and people will understand that there’s gay NFL players. There’s gay athletes everywhere. But I was clearly wrong. It was a huge deal.

“The players who have reached out to me and told me about their sexual orientation, it just means a lot. But I will never say anything about who they are, what teams they are [on]. I’m just saying there’s some famous people, and I’m not the only one.”

READ MORE