It's been a week of ups and downs for Michael Sam. After making history in May as the first openly gay football player to be drafted by the NFL, Sam was cut yesterday by the St. Louis Rams. But, just a few days before, Sam and the Rams received a major shout-out.
While in the Rams' hometown for a show, Harry Styles showed his support by wearing Sam's number 96 jersey onstage.
The mutual support was expressed in an exchange of tweets between the team and the One Direction singer. The Rams tweeted a photo of Styles onstage, Sam thanked Styles, as well as his team for the opportunity (despite his being cut).
Though Saturday's cut may be a disappointment in Sam's career, his bravery has marked a success greater than any win. By entering uncharted territory as an openly gay athlete in a conventionally macho sport — especially right before draft season — Sam generated a conversation that too long remained dormant in the professional sports world. Great change is slow to come, and Sam has shown the power of patience.
“The most worthwhile things in life rarely come easy, this is a lesson I’ve always known,” Sam wrote in a tweet. “The journey continues.”