Publicly, the NFL is being supportive, putting out a statement saying, "We admire Michael Sam's honesty and courage," but in Sports Illustrated numerous unnamed sources say Sam's going to be a "distraction" and not a problem any team is going to want to take on.
Maybe all the outbursts are doing us a favor by allowing us to understand and address homophobia. But the outbursts can only be helpful if they are taken seriously and not dismissed or censored by the outrage police.
I'm a ballplayer. I'm a pro. I've been in an NBA training camp and have competed in some of the top leagues overseas. Based on these experiences, do I think an openly gay competitor would be accepted in the sports world?
I really hoped that the 49ers would win the Super Bowl yesterday, but just as much, I hope that they take the opportunity to become true, vocal champions for gay people in sports. It's a memorable goal, worthy of the team that represents San Francisco and everything it stands for.
The problem that those of us who are fighting for LGBT equality in sports have consistently run up against is that sports media simply aren't interested in reporting on our issues. But you broke through. You made gay issues a centerpiece of the Super Bowl.
Thanks to players like Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe and Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendan Ayanbadejo and their pro-gay advocacy, we're seeing a shift among NFL players, but the leadership needs to take strong stand against Culliver's kind of bigotry if that shift is to continue.