The right message

He is simply not a good enough football player to travel with Oprah's circus and the NFL's. He needs to choose one. He's a seventh-round draft pick who ran a 4.91-second 40-yard dash at the combine. He's a special-teams player.

Sam's handlers have misinterpreted the comparisons between Sam and Jackie Robinson. No. 42 had Hall of Fame talent from day one. No one questioned his skill. His teammates could not deny his obvious ability to excel in the majors and help the Dodgers win.

I know the meme: Sam was SEC Defensive Player of the Year and a first-team All-American. Of course he can play in the NFL.

Well, Jackson Jeffcoat, son of former NFL defensive lineman Jim Jeffcoat, was Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and a consensus All-American at defensive end. He was a five-star recruit coming out of high school. Jeffcoat did not get drafted and signed a free-agent contract with Seattle.

I believe Michael Sam can play in the NFL. I've written that, and stand by those words. His approach to making a roster is wrong. The NFL unemployment line is littered with guys who had enough talent to play but brought the wrong attitude. In terms of approach, Sam reminds me of Vince Young, the Texas quarterback who came to the league with the wrong handlers in his ear and washed out at a young age.  

Sam reported to the combine out of shape and embarrassed himself. He launched a website that is a merchandise store. He complained about being drafted too low. And now he's signing up for a reality show focused on his personal life and professional journey.

He's a seventh-round pick. This is preposterous. I support Michael Sam and the movement he represents. However, if I were Rams coach Jeff Fisher, I'd consider cutting $am today. He's a marginal player with questionable focus on the game.

Michael $am thinks he's Jadeveon Clowney, a freakish defensive end with questionable passion for the game. Clowney could get away with a reality TV show, a merchandise store and scripted draft-day love scenes. Clowney's upside is so enormous that coaches and teammates will tolerate his diva tendencies the same way coaches and players tolerated Randy Moss for years.

This thing with Sam is playing out so bizarrely that I now wonder whether his handlers/manipulators totally misread his talent and the NFL. It appears they read "SEC Defensive Player of the Year" and assumed that meant "the next Lawrence Taylor." They're likely baffled that Clowney could play in the same conference as Sam, post inferior stats and be the toast of the NFL draft while Sam is a few picks from Mr. Irrelevant.

Michael $am is not the right play for the LGBT movement. Michael Sam would uplift the cause and set the table for a gay superstar football player.

Michael $am will be run out of the NFL quicker than Tim Tebow, another celebrity brand whose talent did not justify the circus that followed him.

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