Michael Sam on Monday night sent his first tweet since being included in Jon Gruden’s offensive emails.
Personal emails Gruden sent to then-Washington Football Team executive Bruce Allen were uncovered as part of the NFL’s investigation into the franchise’s workplace. One email comment Gruden made about DeMaurice Smith leaked on Friday. Then on Monday, more emails leaked that led Gruden to resign from his position as head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders.
One of Gruden’s offensive emails reportedly said that the coach was annoyed the NFL forced the Rams to draft “queers,” which is a reference to the team taking Michael Sam with a 7th-round pick in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Right after the New York Times’ story containing Gruden’s leaked emails was published, someone tweeted Sam to thank him for being a role model.
All I want to say on this National Coming Out Day is thank you @MichaelSam52 for your bravery and being a role model when I was younger.
— brett (@bretterflies) October 12, 2021
Sam wrote back with an emoji showing gratitude.
It seems like Sam is taking the high road for now and recognizing that he served as a role model and inspiration for some.
Sam ended up being cut by the Rams and never played in an NFL game. But him being openly gay helped pave the way for current Raiders DL Carl Nassib to eventually come out publicly over the offseason.
Now 31, Sam, a former SEC Defensive Player of the Year, ended his football career in 2015. A report published in 2016 offered an explanation for why the Rams drafted Sam.