Michael Sam’s dream of making an NFL roster took a hit but it hasn’t ended. Sam signed with the Dallas Cowboys Wednesday to be on the team’s practice squad. As we all know Sam was the first openly gay player drafted in the NFL by the St.Louis Rams in May. Sam played well during his preseason stint with the Rams before being cut last week. He finished preseason with 2.5 sacks and led the Rams in tackles in his last game against the Dolphins. The Rams believed Sam wasn’t needed on a defensive line with lots of talent so decided to let him go. So Jerry Jones and the Cowboys took a chance on rookie defensive end by bringing him in to Valley Ranch for a physical and signing him today. The Rams’ trash could end up being the Cowboys’ treasure by the end of the season.
Sam is a good fit for the Cowboys for multiple reasons. The first being because in the words of Simon Cowell this defense is absolutely dreadful. There’s not much talent on this defense whether its on the practice squad or the starting unit. If Sam plays with the same intensity he did during the preseason there should be no doubts of him not only making the team but being able to contribute to the Cowboys’ defense at some point in the regular season. This defense is so thin with the depth at the line that Michael Sam could see himself in some regular season action much sooner than expected. With defensive ends Anthony Spencer and DeMarcus Lawrence sidelined with injuries the Cowboys starters are expected to be George Selvie and Jeremy Mincey.
Tyrone Crawford and newly added Lavar Edwards are expected to be the backups but be in heavy rotation. Besides Selvie’s seven sacks last season there’s a ton of uncertainty at the defensive end position. Selvie also has concern with a lingering shoulder injury he attained during preseason. Sam should thrive on this opportunity and seize some playing time in Big D. Sam will be coached by on of the best defensive coordinators in the game especially at defensive line with Rod Marinelli.
He should fit well in Marinelli’s 4-3 scheme where he can just come off the edge and do what he does best which is get after the quarterback. It’s a win win situation for the Cowboys. They’re getting a hungry player willing to do whatever he can to prove he belongs in this league. They’re also getting a player with a knack at disrupting the quarterback which the Cowboys desperately need. Sam recorded 11.5 sacks and won the SEC Co-Defensive Player of the Year in his senior season at Missouri. Let’s face it the SEC is the most talented conference in college football. Being one of the top two defensive players in the SEC means you have talent. Michael Sam has raw talent and Marinelli should be able to bring the most out of him. If Marinelli can help make Sam a more versatile pass rusher this will be a huge signing for the Cowboys. This is a great signing for the Cowboys with a low risk high reward with season just days away.