5 Reasons Why St. Louis Rams Drafting Michael Sam Will Prove Irrelevant on the Football Field

5 Reasons Why Michael Sam Won't Make St. Louis Rams' Roster

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

Social significance aside, Michael Sam being drafted by the St. Louis Rams will likely prove to be an irrelevant move. Though the fact that the first openly gay player was drafted into the NFL is a huge cultural development for the league and a great step forward for equality, Sam actually making an impact on the field is highly unlikely. Here are five reasons why all of the fanfare over Sam’s milestone achievement will be soon forgotten.

5. Jump In Competition Will Prove Too Much

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

5. Jump In Competition Will Prove Too Much

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

A stellar statistical season at Missouri put Michael Sam on the NFL radar this past season. Even though the SEC is the cream of the crop in college football, unfortunately not even all of the conference’s blue-chip prospects pan out as planned. His 19 tackles-for-loss and 11.5 sacks this past season were impressive, but translating that the NFL level is going to be pretty much impossible.

4. Average Football Player At Best

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

4. Average Football Player At Best

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Even with the stats listed in the previous slide, too often Michael Sam just gets lost in the game film when watching for him to stand out. Shedding blocks is something that he really struggled with lining up at DE in the SEC, so just imagine how difficult the task will be at linebacker in the NFL. It’s hard to see his effort plays really translating at the next level where everyone is a step faster than him.

3. Stacked Depth Chart at DE

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

3. Stacked Depth Chart at DE

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

Measuring in at 6-foot-2, 261-pounds at the NFL Combine, Michael Sam really has the frame for a 4-3 DE. Unfortunately that’s the most stacked position on the Rams’ depth chart with All-Pro Robert Quinn and perennial double-digit sack master Chris Long on his opposite. Add in William Hayes and Eugene Sims and there really doesn’t seem to be much room for Sam fitting in unless he makes a position change.

2. Not Fast Enough to Convert to LB

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

2. Not Fast Enough to Convert to LB

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

4.91. That was Michael Sam’s 40-time at the NFL Combine, and that’s not nearly fast enough to transition from DE to linebacker at the next level. He’s also a former pass rusher used to playing with his hand in the dirt, so standing up and having to cover in space is where that lack of elite speed will be exposed. Good story or not, NFL teams won’t carry a player on the roster who can’t help win games.

1. Unlikely to Make 53-Man Roster

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Scott Kane-USA TODAY Sports

1. Unlikely to Make 53-Man Roster

Michael Sam St. Louis Rams
Scott Kane-USA TODAY Sports

It’s never easy to rain on the parade of the masses, but the story of Sam will ultimately end in disappointment when the rookie is on the wrong side of the 53-man roster cut bubble. If the Rams ran a 3-4 and were trying to transition Sam to a 3-4 OLB pass rusher it would be one thing, but moving him to OLB in the 4-3 is a different story. Hopefully this socially significant step lasts longer than training camp, but it really seems unlikely.

Anthony Blake is a Senior Writer/Copy Editor for Rant Sports. You Can Follow Him on Twitter, on Facebook, or add him to your network on Google.


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