Yes, you read that headline correctly. Michael Sam, the NFL’s first openly gay player, has agreed to shoot a multi-part documentary series that follows him as he tries to make the final roster cut for the St. Louis Rams.
Sam, of course, made history this year. First, he came out to the New York Times before the NFL draft, and then when the Rams chose him in the seventh round, he and his boyfriend celebrated with the kiss seen ‘round the sports world.
But not everyone’s happy about Sam’s TV plans, according to The Wire:
Now that Sam appears to be parlaying that genuine moment into the very not-genuine world of reality TV, some football watchers are souring on this feel good story. “A few months ago, Sam asked fans to let their guards down and invest in him in a very different way than they do in, say, Johnny Football or RGIII,” Deadspin’s Drew Magary writes. “Now he’s chosen the favored path of every D-list asshole in America.”
Others, like NFL Network’s Albert Breer, noted that this doesn’t jibe with Sam’s constant exhortations to be treated like any other player and judged on his football skills.
But Sam has reiterated his desire to be known first and foremost as a football player. “Like every player out there working to make a team right now, my focus is on playing football to the very best of my ability,” said Sam. “I am determined.”