The Dallas Cowboys are the highest-revenue team in the NFL, and the most talked about team in the NFL, but the Cowboys, or “America’s Team,” got it right by not adding Michael Sam practice jerseys to their revenue stream.
Since Sam was signed by the Cowboys yesterday, Dallas has made his signing all about football and nothing else, which it should be. As we all know by now, Sam was the first openly gay player drafted when he was selected by the St. Louis Rams in the seventh round. After getting cut this past weekend by the Rams, a team that had a deep defensive line rotation, Sam joins the Cowboys’ practice squad.
What’s most intriguing about this is that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones would do anything to make a buck or two and make even more headlines as well. The temptation would have been great for Jones and Cowboys brass to sell Sam’s jersey, which was the sixth-best selling jersey in the NFL between May and July. However, given the nature of the practice squad and the constant upheaval of an NFL roster, it made sense for them to hold off on selling Sam’s No. 46.
Sam has been the most talked about practice squad player in the history of the NFL, but the practice squad is still the practice squad. No matter how bad the Cowboys defense has been in the past, Sam still has to prove, just like every other player, that he’s good enough to make an active 53-man NFL roster. If Sam proves that he is good enough to makes the 53-man roster, the Cowboys can then sell his jersey number with a normal defensive lineman’s number and continue to maintain and improve their status as the NFL’s highest-revenue team.