New St. Louis Rams defensive end Michael Sam says he's ready to focus on football. The former Missouri Tigers star became the first openly gay player drafted in the NFL last weekend. Sam was formally introduced Tuesday and says he believes he is here to stay.
"I'm determined to be great, I'm determined to make this team, and I have every bit of confidence in myself that I'll make this team," he said.
Sam was selected in the seventh round with the 249th overall pick. He endured some backlash on social media after being seen on television embracing and kissing his boyfriend after being drafted. Sam says he has a simple message for anyone struggling with their identity.
"It's okay to be who you are. Whether you're gay, straight, black, or white, it's okay to be comfortable in your own skin," he opined.
The SEC Defensive Player of the Year publicly revealed his sexuality earlier this year.