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How Does Being Gay Affect your Draft Stock?

by Jerry Bader

Missouri's Michael Sam is about to find out. Sam's homosexuality was apparently an open secret at his college and it's believed most NFL teams were aware of it. So his decision to come out as gay Sunday shouldn't have been a surprise to them. But based on SI's reporting, it will make NFL teams jittery.

First, let's discuss motive; Sam was already projected mid to late round. Is this a possible excuse in the making? Like most players, Sam almost certainly thinks he should go higher than projected. Most rankings have him a 3rd to 7th round pick. First, that's a wide range; there is a big difference between a third and a seventh. The Packers have built Super Bowl teams on third round picks.

Did Sam believe coming out would help his cause? He might have; he'll have a very sympathetic media making him a hero. But will that sway GM's afraid of the dynamic in the locker room? Interestingly, one former GM quoted in the SI story says he believes Green Bay is one of a handful of franchises who can handle that dynamic. That's apparently praise for Packer's management.

But the national media usually take every opportunity to try to paint the Packers fan base as a bunch of redneck hicks. It would be very interesting to see what would happen if Sam landed in Green Bay. They need defensive line help but Sam is undersized for an NFL lineman. It'll be interesting so see where Sam lands and in which round.