Courage. Courage is defined in our negative society as a gay football player coming out of the closet in a set up arranged by his handlers and the sports media right before the NFL combine, being praised in the sports media for it effusively, having anyone who even hints at your life or actions sent to the Gulag and fined, having the President congratulate you personally for being drafted at the very end of the NFL draft and now, getting a reality show, sorry, documentary for Oprah Winfrey's network OWN made to track your climb into the NFL. Courage is when a teen has to figure out when to tell his or her parents they are gay. My guess is that if a parent disapproves, the media is not there to shame them and then have them fined or fired by their boss. Michael Sam was a crafty guy with coming out, using the sports media and the cache to toy with teams. Sam is not a dummy. He knows in our current media and social environment that he cannot lose.
1. If Michael Sam proves his doubters and haters wrong, he plays for a decade and earns good money while being a real life spokesman for gays. Book for great money and lifetime of speaking gigs. Win
2. If Michael Sam proves his doubters and haters right and washes out immediately, he will be able to whine about the NFL culture not helping him, the pressure of being the 1st gay NFL player or the circus of it all. Michael Sam will write a book for good money and make the speaking gig circuit. It does not matter if it is a small college, their gay-straight alliance will want him, and that still pays cash. Win.
3. If Michael Sam plays a few seasons of meh play, copy the washout path but throw in some sports talk gig since he will be a special case (gay) and he actually played with the big boys! Win.
4. If Michael Sam gets injured and retires young, he can do all of the book and speaking tours with the added bonus of blaming his poor career on an injury. Win.
Sam has already whined that he should have been taken higher, using the gay excuse. Another first team All-American, Jackson Jeffcoat, was not drafted at all. Prove it on the field. What Sam has that no other 7th round draft pick has to fall back on is a special little tag (1st gay) that he gets to carry all his life for praise and rewards from progressive institutions. He has OWN following him with cameras, which he will be compensated for handsomely. No other rookie is getting that. Darn, those Christians will no accept him and those mean homophobes (lurking in the shadows avoiding fines and firings), but they do not run America's colleges, America's media and America's HR and sales departments who hire guest speakers for functions. Whatever path he takes, Michael Sam can't lose.