Michael Sam became the first openly gay player to appear in a Canadian Football League game Friday night, playing sparingly for the Montreal Alouettes in a 26-23 loss to the Ottawa Redblacks.
“I was focusing on my assignments, actually,” Sam said when asked whether he was thinking about the significance of the moment before kickoff. “I’m not going to lie, there were some big jitters out there, and I was nervous when I first got on the field. I didn’t get any opportunities to make many plays. I had some good pass rushes, I thought, but close enough is not a sack.”
Sam played defensive end and failed to record a tackle Friday.
Sam had an opening with the CFL’s Alouettes even during his time in 2014 with the St. Louis Rams and Dallas Cowboys, with the team saying that the door would be open for him to join if the NFL didn’t work out. Sam signed on to the Alouettes in May.