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What’s Next for Michael Sam?

By on August 17, 2015
Image #: 29323081    St. Louis Rams defensive end Michael Sam attends an introductory press conference on Tuesday, May 13, 2014, at Rams Park in Earth City, Mo. (Chris Lee/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/MCT)      St. Louis Post-Dispatch/ MCT /LANDOV

After a great run in Missouri, a string of high profile team tryout disappointments, and even Dancing with the Stars, Michael Sam is stepping away from pro football. At least for now.

The road to a permanent NFL team has eluded Sam, the first openly gay player drafted by the NFL, has told the Canadian Football League’s Montreal Alouettes that he is leaving the team, citing mental stress and other concerns.

“The last 12 months have been very difficult for me, to the point where I became concerned with my mental health,” Sam tweeted Friday. “Because of this I am going to step away from the game at this time.”

The Alouettes confirmed in a release that Sam has left the club for “personal reasons” and that he has been added to the team’s suspended list.

The 25-year-old defensive end, the 2013 Southeastern Conference defensive player of the year at Missouri, failed to record a tackle in Montreal’s loss to Ottawa.

Michael Sam agreed to a two-year deal with the Alouettes this summer. But he left training camp June 12, citing personal reasons, and sat out the team’s first five games. It remains to be seen if his relationship was a major factor in all of this.

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Photo Credit: Image #: 29323081    St. Louis Rams defensive end Michael Sam attends an introductory press conference on Tuesday, May 13, 2014, at Rams Park in Earth City, Mo. (Chris Lee/St. Louis Post-Dispatch/MCT)      St. Louis Post-Dispatch/ MCT /LANDOV

 

Twitter screenshot courtesy of Fox Sports.