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Michael Sam expects to make the Rams, or some other roster

AP

After his final preseason game, Rams defensive end Michael Sam said he expects to survive tomorrow’s cutdown and be on the regular-season roster — or to get picked up by some other team if the Rams cut him.

“I’m very confident,” Sam said, via the Associated Press. “I’m going to sleep really well tonight and I’m very confident I’m going to be on a team, the Rams or any other team in the NFL.”

Sam has played well throughout the preseason and played well again on Thursday night against the Dolphins, leading the team with five solo tackles. Unfortunately for Sam, the Rams are deep on the defensive line and won’t be an easy roster for any seventh-round draft pick to make. Sam is widely viewed as competing with fellow rookie defensive end Ethan Westbrooks for the final roster spot, and Westbrooks had a very good preseason finale, with a sack, a tackle for loss and two quarterback hits.

If Sam gets cut by the Rams when they get down to the 53-player limit on Saturday, he’ll go on waivers and be available to all 31 other teams. Sam has played well enough in the preseason to make a good case that if he doesn’t last with the Rams, some other team should pick him up, and he’ll become the first openly gay player to make a regular-season roster.

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81 Responses to “Michael Sam expects to make the Rams, or some other roster”
  1. ausernamethatisavailable says: Aug 29, 2014 7:05 AM

    Now Sam being a huge distraction may work to the rams advantage. They can probably stash him on the practice squad bc nobody is going to want to deal with the circus. People can talk about how it’s no big deal anymore. But the fact that this is a story proves otherwise

  2. ravenswhat says: Aug 29, 2014 7:06 AM

    He should. Will another team put any bigotry aside and pick him up and “risk” rocking their locker room boat? That is the big question.

  3. montrealknowledge says: Aug 29, 2014 7:06 AM

    Big Rams fan ( unfortunately). Rams will suck , probably be best for him to get cut and find a better team. Maybe 2 wins this year… I hope someone who knows more could tell me otherwise.

  4. whiteknightblackheart says: Aug 29, 2014 7:24 AM

    Hope the Jets pick him up. Kid has the stuff.

  5. tundratommy says: Aug 29, 2014 7:26 AM

    Will there be articles on all of the other 7th round draft picks who expect to make a roster as well? smh

  6. jamezz23 says: Aug 29, 2014 7:27 AM

    Please rams keep him, I don’t want that circus coming to my team

  7. joetoronto says: Aug 29, 2014 7:30 AM

    I thought the message was that gay people are the same as everybody else?

    How come we hear more about this average LB than anybody else?

  8. tinkletinkleonyourstar says: Aug 29, 2014 7:30 AM

    Of course he’ll make a team. We live in a PC society.
    If he didn’t though I’m sure the namesake of the Rooney rule will try and rectify it.
    After all, shouldn’t every nfl team be required to work out at least one gay player??

  9. burtreynoldstoupee says: Aug 29, 2014 7:35 AM

    Yeah, and so do a couple hundred other players.

  10. beachsidejames says: Aug 29, 2014 7:36 AM

    Good player at a position where teams need depth. I think he catches on somewhere.

  11. nonetruerthanblue says: Aug 29, 2014 7:37 AM

    The kid is damn good. He has earned a spot.

  12. thelastpieceofcheese says: Aug 29, 2014 7:38 AM

    For three and a half quarters, Michael Sam shutdown the potent Miami Dolphins offense.

    He’s already proven that he is better than half of the starting defensive ends in the league and should easily make any team.

  13. iammrbinky says: Aug 29, 2014 7:41 AM

    I think Sam making a roster is more of a hope of many not because he earned it. He wasn’t impressive last night against an unimpressive Miami OL.

  14. classyjacklambert says: Aug 29, 2014 7:43 AM

    What were his official preseason stats? He looked like he belonged when I saw him play.

  15. pftthoughtpolicemostwanted says: Aug 29, 2014 7:51 AM

    I hope he gets cut and disappears so I don’t have to hear about him anymore.

  16. purpleman527 says: Aug 29, 2014 7:53 AM

    Some 3rd or 4th stringer for the Vikings forced a fumble and recovered it last night against the Titans. Will the media be asking, and/or, demanding that he will make the team?

    I wonder why?

  17. annes22 says: Aug 29, 2014 7:53 AM

    5 tackles last night against the Dolphins, so what?
    The Dolphins had all their “no names” out there for the entire game. Barely any of them will make the roster. It was a game of rubbish.

  18. countmahdrof says: Aug 29, 2014 7:59 AM

    NFL Network this AM gave 45 secs to the Fins/Rams this AM. It consisted of exactly 3 Michael Sam tackles downfield a few yards. Woo-hoo.

    It’s obvious what REALLY interests those guys.

  19. shlort says: Aug 29, 2014 8:00 AM

    Sam is confident because everyone, everywhere is afraid to say he isn’t good enough to play in the NFL. I am starting to think “Sam played well” translates to “I dare not say anything negative because he is gay”

    Sam is an average looking player. Slightly below average quickness and reaction time. That is what the Rams have there. People want to see something else because of Sam’s sexual orientation.

  20. leque4 says: Aug 29, 2014 8:00 AM

    I hope the Rams Cut him and the Titans Pic him up. He would be a great asset to our team.

  21. bucsorbust says: Aug 29, 2014 8:08 AM

    Out of spirit and love for the game, I would like to see every 7th round pick make the roster, and some undrafted free agents. This is white knuckle time. How many of us need that job, want that opportunity? The difference with the NFL is bigger money. But like you and I, if they don’t make it, they are out of work. I wish all them best of luck. Believe me, if Mike Sam doesn’t make it, he’s got plenty of chances outside the NFL. I worry about they guys who put all their beans in this basket.

    Story from Tampa Bay from a couple years back. Local boy taking care of mom. Lives in a very humble house with mom. He makes the team, minimal salary, injuries to others helped. Undrafted free agent. Did well. Made the team barely last year I think. Now solid to make it–won’t start, but good player. Not a big contract, but enough to do well in any of our terms, help out the family. What a heckuva dream the NFL. I wish they’d all well. Man’s name: Leonard Johnson.

  22. fwippel says: Aug 29, 2014 8:08 AM

    And if he hadn’t come out of the closet, the national media wouldn’t care one iota about whether he makes any roster.

  23. buccan33rz1976 says: Aug 29, 2014 8:13 AM

    And when the Rams do cut him , it will be a firestorm by the media throwing every imaginable discrimination question at the rams…. Sad, but true… Good look with that St. Louis Lambs…

  24. notthetroll says: Aug 29, 2014 8:13 AM

    I think whoever doesn’t make the Rams will make another team. Doubt either get through waivers and land on the practice squad.

  25. broncostevenp says: Aug 29, 2014 8:17 AM

    From what I saw, he’s right. He played well enough to make a roster. Tampa Bay needs pass rushers in the worst way.

    Hey, that rhymed. I was a poet and didn’t even think so.

  26. clamdiggers says: Aug 29, 2014 8:22 AM

    Would be the best player on the Vikings defense

  27. dartmouthstevens says: Aug 29, 2014 8:27 AM

    To quote Bill Russel, “I only have 1 question, can he play?”

    The kid not played well enough to make the Rams roster because they are very deep at DE. I expect him to be cut (and if not picked up on waivers) put on their practice squad. However, I do expect him to not make it through waivers. Some team whose D Line sucks (oh Cowgirls), should pick him up. Why? Because the kid can play. Nothing else should matter.

  28. Grulks says: Aug 29, 2014 8:29 AM

    Given the injuries to Dallas, its a good bet that if he doesnt make Rams, Dallas puts in a claim for him. The Rams have to know that, so I doubt he is gonna be someone they try to squeeze through waivers.

  29. saintskin33 says: Aug 29, 2014 8:36 AM

    Dallas should scoop him. They literally have zero pass rush.

  30. nomar8477 says: Aug 29, 2014 8:39 AM

    Im not really the sentimental type. Nor do I have anything against gay people. I hope he makes it simply because he came out, which Im sure was very hard to do, and was drafted. He went through a very tough time Im sure due to alot of peoples ignorance. Obviously dont pick him up if your certain he wont contribute, but if has played well..I hope he gets a shot. Im sure he gave 110% and will continue to do so. It’d be a good story.

  31. beckzhere says: Aug 29, 2014 8:43 AM

    Bring him to Atlanta. He’d love it here and we can always use pass rushing help.

  32. johnnyjagfan says: Aug 29, 2014 8:46 AM

    Send him to JAX!!!! Gus’ locker room has a place for him.

    LEO!

  33. immafubared says: Aug 29, 2014 8:51 AM

    The fact is, this guy agented up and came out because he knew he didn’t have the overall talent but as a gay guy could maybe sneek in.
    There was no other reason to come out. There have been gay football players since the 50’s.
    All I know is he made plays against second and third stringers and the Rams D line is very strong without him. Maybe practice squad.

  34. riflemanlax says: Aug 29, 2014 8:53 AM

    The Eagles could use a younger pass rusher here, and just think of all the support he’d get from guys like Connor Barwin.

  35. lrical says: Aug 29, 2014 9:02 AM

    Come to Dallas.

  36. timmmah10 says: Aug 29, 2014 9:02 AM

    He was given every opportunity to put together some good tape, and I think he’s done enough to make A team. The Rams? Their D Line is pretty damn good already, he was given a tough task trying to break into that group.

    There are plenty of teams out there that need DEs… he’ll find a home.

  37. longdrive2011 says: Aug 29, 2014 9:10 AM

    There are a few hundred other players in the lower tiers that also have hopes, dreams, and have played their buns off. I guess they don’t matter.

  38. joefelicelli says: Aug 29, 2014 9:11 AM

    Dallas needs to be making phone calls today to every team that is deep at DE before final cuts. The Rams and the Bears are the ones that come to mind. The Rams can’t keep all of them, and neither can the Bears. The Cowboys have nothing at DE, and need any live body they can find. David Bass, Austen Lane, and Cornelius Washington all had flashes against the Browns starters last night for the Bears, and as mentioned above, Westbrooks and Sam both have played well this preseason. Jerry has never been afraid to give up future considerations to win now, so why not offer 6th-7th round picks for the guys you want, and avoid the waiver battle?

    Guys who can rush the passer have neon lights blinking next to their names when the 32 NFL teams look at them. It is really an accomplishment to sneak one onto the practice squad. If either Westbrooks or Sam make it to the practice squad (assuming they are cut this weekend), I would be surprised.

  39. bigdawg24 says: Aug 29, 2014 9:15 AM

    The guy has a knack for getting to the QB.

    He deserves to make some team.

  40. bucsorbust says: Aug 29, 2014 9:16 AM

    @broncostevenp
    Sorry, Sam is a Ram, not a Buc. He’d not make the tryout down here, much less the draft. Wish him well, but the planned Bucs pass rush has all QBs around the NFL checking their helmet straps. Just the facts.

  41. bucsorbust says: Aug 29, 2014 9:22 AM

    At the end of the day, he was average. Outperformed by Westbrooks…cut Sam. Cut. Cut. Cut.

  42. bucsorbust says: Aug 29, 2014 9:24 AM

    Don’t get me wrong. Mike Sam is a pro player. Good enough to start in the NFL? No. Good as a backup? Maybe. Good as practice squad? Probably, which is a place a lot of guys would love to be. Good accomplishment. Rams roster? Probably not? Cut him.

  43. ipskipskyblue says: Aug 29, 2014 9:26 AM

    I was watching him play the last few games. All his highlights are simply because he is slow off the ball and just happens to be where the play was going.

    I never really noticed a slow player until you focus on him and see hwo slowly he is gettign off the ball and he has no downfield speed. His downfield tackles have been when the ball carrier is cutting back and he happens to be there.

    I like the analogy about the player for the vikings. makes total sense.

  44. seals1 says: Aug 29, 2014 9:36 AM

    well of course he expects to make the team. His lawyers are ready for when he doesn’t. Enjoy the ride St. Louis because you are locked in now. Maybe you can just donate to several groups if Sam did not make the cut on the football field.

    Sam is going to change his number to 22

  45. El Pollo Loco says: Aug 29, 2014 9:37 AM

    He wants to design the teams new uniforms

  46. sweetwillie66 says: Aug 29, 2014 9:50 AM

    He should make it…he played his way onto a team…as for not being able to make the Rams…when did they become the ’85 Bears?

  47. theparadoxx82 says: Aug 29, 2014 10:05 AM

    Without his “backstory” his spot might be in doubt, but he didn’t make any glaring mistakes so I’d be shocked if the team took the PR risk in cutting him, even if it’d be the better move overall.

    That guy’s agent is a genius.

  48. michiganhockey11 says: Aug 29, 2014 10:07 AM

    From what I have seen, he has done enough to make a team. But I’d be lying if I said that if for some reason he doesn’t get picked up, there won’t be a lawsuit.

  49. rpiotr01 says: Aug 29, 2014 10:08 AM

    Westbrooks has been an impactful, three down player. Really impressed with him. Sam is a one trick pony. Just my 2 cents but between the two there’s no competition as to who is a better player.

    That said, Sam should be picked up elsewhere where DL isn’t as obscenely deep as it is in St Louis.

  50. whocares832 says: Aug 29, 2014 10:25 AM

    Why does he expect to be on a team? Is it because he’s a member of a protected class, who will file a discrimination lawsuit against the NFL if he isn’t on a roster; or because he’s deserving of a roster spot, practice squad or otherwise? What a world we live in.

  51. ashleyschafferbmw says: Aug 29, 2014 11:06 AM

    People actually think there will be a lawsuit if he doesn’t make the team? Be serious. You guys really hate this guy. Sounds like you need to get over it

  52. armchairqb says: Aug 29, 2014 11:10 AM

    I expect not to care. I also expect to see him routinely get destroyed by O lineman throughout the league.

  53. mutantman87 says: Aug 29, 2014 11:13 AM

    A lot of sour grapes here. Wow. Anyways, Sam will have a hard time making the Rams because of the extreme DL depth, but someone else with line depth issues might pick him up. I don’t think it’s a stretch to imagine him somewhere like Dallas, Oakland, or Buffalo. Either that, or he is on a practice squad and is the first guy called up after an injury on active roster.

  54. goldandcrimson68 says: Aug 29, 2014 11:17 AM

    Michael Sam will be handled like every other NFL player, however the club chooses to handle him. Life isn’t fair and the best guy doesn’t always make it. The challenge here is that the media is so invested in his success, that if he is cut and not picked up (it could happen) all hell will break loose because they have already decided that the only he won’t make it is discrimination.

    A defensive end making 5 tackles, catching plays from behind is opportunistic but not impressive. The Rams won’t value it nearly as much as the media has. You know the fix is in though, one play they were praising involved him chasing a play from behind and missing a tackle. This will be interesting. Ethan Westbrooke (undrafted free agent) had 3 tackles for loss. In terms of evaluation that’s more impressive than what Michael Sam did. Is it discrimination that Sam gets the spotlight because of his sexual orientation?

  55. goodguyattorney says: Aug 29, 2014 11:19 AM

    I really don’t understand why folks get so annoyed at a “feel good” story. If Sam was a seventh round pick who was deaf, or was diabetic or was the grandson of Deacon Jones there would be similar stories and attention – remember those stories and attention about Jerry Rice’s son? Wouldn’t it have been cool to see Rice Jr. make a team? Wouldn’t you have wanted to watch him just to see?

    Sam is different and we are usually intrigued by those that are different because we usually like to pull for the underdog. While I am WAY under qualified to evaluate whether Sam should make the Rams roster, I do think it is a cool story and I’d like to see him play. Good luck making the team dude.

  56. touchdownroddywhite says: Aug 29, 2014 11:29 AM

    Hope he gets cut and lands in Atlanta. He’s shown enough to make a case that he can do well in the NFL, and let’s face it, ATL needs all the help they can bloody get.

  57. hollywood26 says: Aug 29, 2014 11:41 AM

    Some of you amuse me. Michael Sam is not an NFL starter, but he’s not an ‘average’ pass rusher either. He has an NFL skill in rushing the passer. The reason he isn’t a starter is because he hasn’t developed the rest of his game yet. When/If he does then he can progress.

    But let’s not pretend as if the dude is some bum who is only in the league because of his sexuality. It was his announcement of his sexuality that immediately had his ranking drop from 4th rounder to possibly undrafted. Prior to that he was projected as a 3-4th rounder. Two days after the announcement he was suddenly a 7th rounder. Coincidence?

  58. vikesfan says: Aug 29, 2014 11:46 AM

    I hope he makes it, in part because I do not care to see more Chris Kluwe press conferences.

  59. ravensfaninflorida says: Aug 29, 2014 11:56 AM

    Let the media circus begin if he does get cut. And I bet that the LGTB community will be protesting with picket signs outside the teams doors !!!!

  60. bbk1000 says: Aug 29, 2014 12:12 PM

    The guy had three sacks during the preseason…..I would have expected more….

  61. paythevig says: Aug 29, 2014 12:12 PM

    Good for Michael Sam. Now ask every other player in the league that’s on the Roster Bubble. Because we’re all equal, everyone’s opinion should make headlines every other day.

  62. b3nz0z says: Aug 29, 2014 12:28 PM

    haters only do one thing

  63. dalcow4 says: Aug 29, 2014 12:30 PM

    He was going to make the team regardless, unless he got hurt. The league wanted him there so he will be there. Lucky for the Rams it turned out he could play well enough to justify it.

  64. greenhornfan says: Aug 29, 2014 12:39 PM

    It will be very difficult for the Ram’s to cut it. It won’t matter that may not be good enough. The PC will spin it. Unfortunate.

  65. politicallyincorrect says: Aug 29, 2014 12:40 PM

    Sam has done well but think the Rams opt for Westbrooks who they think can do more (he can rush inside while Sam is more situational outside rusher); think Sam gets cut by Rams but does catch on with another team or go to practice squad. I just hope decision is on football and not being “special”.

  66. thraiderskin says: Aug 29, 2014 12:59 PM

    The guy can ball… he should make an NFL roster, I just don’t know if it will be in St. Louis. I definitely had my doubts after the combine and seeing him struggle middle to late in the season in college, but every time I see him play, he looks legitimate. Like I said, St Louis has a lot of d-end talent, not sure he’ll make that squad, but he’ll be part of someone else’s.

  67. inverva says: Aug 29, 2014 1:00 PM

    As usual the media is trying to make Sam’s story bigger than what it really is.

    Kudos to Mike Sam and the Rams for stepping above the fray and handling the issue with class.

    NFL players know there are other gay players in the league, and they have professional handled this issue. It ludicrous how some people try to make something out of nothing for no other reason than Mike Sam opted to be honest and live with integrity about his sexual orientation.

  68. annes22 says: Aug 29, 2014 1:12 PM

    The Dolphins were terrible last night with their 3rd team, and Michael Sam thinks he did well??
    Please, so he hit a few people, and he deserves to stay on the Rams. I hope he stays put, don’t send him to South Florida thanks.

  69. jmc8888 says: Aug 29, 2014 1:16 PM

    Playing well?

    By what metric? A generic sack metric that doesn’t take into account his slow as molasses athleticism that somehow passed pathetic attempts to block him?

    He’s been lucky. Now, I like his motor and drive, which allows him to make his luck. But that won’t be the case against true NFL players.

    Good luck to him, but no, people are WAY overrating his nothing sacks.

  70. canedaddy says: Aug 29, 2014 1:18 PM

    If everyone who played fairly well in the fourth preseason game against other third- and fourth-teamers made an NFL roster, you’d have 70-man rosters.

  71. blabidibla says: Aug 29, 2014 1:27 PM

    Haters going hate, but Sam has proven himself more than capable to play at this level.

  72. afcdomination says: Aug 29, 2014 1:27 PM

    I love football and watch NFL N(sigh). I have seen more of Michael Sam than any other player this preseason on defense. in fact, watching chiefs packers last night, I learned the Packers have an UDFA DL with 5 sacks, and I honestly don’t remember his name, and won’t look it up to make my point. Meanwhile I have seen multiple segments per day on NFL N about the difference Michael Sam can make on a defense. really? can we go back to actually getting highlights and information about all the players and not just the QB’s you like and Michael Sam?

  73. richndc says: Aug 29, 2014 1:29 PM

    Fingers crossed he somehow ends up in Dallas. He has the drive, now he has some confidence. High character guy. This all typically adds up to becoming a great player, which right now, he is not. We need the help, if St. Louis plans to keep him, they will have to put him on the roster, Dallas is not the only team who is looking at its current group of D-Linemen and thinking “how the hell are we gonna win with THESE guys?” I think his passion for the game would be a welcome add in Big D. Somehow, I feel he won’t end up there.

  74. ducksk says: Aug 29, 2014 1:36 PM

    I’m sick of this dude and his story. I don’t care what happens to him. It’s time for football.

  75. therealtrenches says: Aug 29, 2014 1:46 PM

    tundratommy says:
    Aug 29, 2014 7:26 AM
    Will there be articles on all of the other 7th round draft picks who expect to make a roster as well? smh

    ———-

    wow, it took five comments for this predictable gem to appear. You’re slowing down, PfT-world.

    hey tommy, are you one of those people who thinks sam is “flaunting his sexuality” to “draw attention to himself” by coming out?

    If so, think about being a professional athlete and living a lie to everyone around you. Then think about the short sightedness of your comment.

  76. boss81hogg says: Aug 29, 2014 2:05 PM

    I’ve never seen so much attention for a late round pick.

  77. palinurus10 says: Aug 29, 2014 2:51 PM

    @hollywood – you are factually wrong. Sam was always a borderline prospect. Most thought he would not get drafted but might get signed as a free agent. He came out TO INCREASE his chances of being drafted and to create a hedge against getting cut. Fact. Look up his pre draft rankings. Maybe he can get a job with ESPN as a locker room reporter, focussing on the showers. That PC, shallow network seems obsessed with him and that.

  78. dioxinblues says: Aug 29, 2014 3:06 PM

    Michael Sam did very well. He’s got talent and he’s coachable. He lost the weight, focused, got better and better each game. The Rams are scary deep at DL but there are 31 other teams out there who good use a good kid like this on their team.

  79. dioxinblues says: Aug 29, 2014 3:13 PM

    ravensfaninflorida says:
    Aug 29, 2014 11:56 AM
    Let the media circus begin if he does get cut. And I bet that the LGTB community will be protesting with picket signs outside the teams doors !!!!
    ==============================
    Well, speaking for the LGBT(IQ, etc.) community – because why not? – nope. We understand it’s a business and he is on a team that’s fully stacked at the D-line position (the Rams are my FF Team Defense for this reason alone). But the lad has skills and he has talent and he’s done everything that’s been asked of him. Hate ESPN for giving him the Tim Tebow Treatment, as is their way, but Michael Sam has done nothing to warrant the ire directed at him. He’s just a kid outta college trying to earn a job.

  80. spellmethis says: Aug 29, 2014 3:16 PM

    Where are the stories about all the other bubble players fighting to survive cuts or find work in the league? This is being beaten to death by “news” sources for hits. It’s bush league, evidenced by the world wide network’s classless story. If he makes the team or another team, that’s excellent. But there’s no reason to turn this into a minute by minute breaking news story. Only the “news” sources are making this an issue.

  81. kando53 says: Aug 29, 2014 5:22 PM

    Pretty funny how all the tv commentators last week thought he would make the team, no problem. Now, after a decent, but not great game, they suddenly all expect him to be cut. Would really, really be nice if any of those clowns actually had real insights to the game.

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