Tony Dungy Clarifies Comments
Published on July 23 2014 2:24 am
Last Updated on July 23 2014 2:24 am
Written by Millie Lange
Former NFL head coach and current television analyst Tony Dungy tried to clarify comments he made concerning St. Louis Rams draft pick Michael Sam, the
first openly gay player in the league.
Dungy, in an interview with a Tampa newspaper published earlier this week, said he would not have drafted Sam. Criticism poured in after Dungy was quoted as saying he "wouldn't want to deal with all of it," meaning the potential media frenzy surrounding Sam. On Tuesday, in a statement released to media outlets, Dungy attempted to clear up any misconceptions.
"I was asked whether I would have drafted Michael Sam and I answered that I would not have drafted him," Dungy said in the statement. "I gave my honest answer, which is that I felt drafting him would bring much distraction to the team. At the time of my interview, the Oprah Winfrey reality show that was going to chronicle Michael's first season had been announced.
"I was not asked whether or not Michael Sam deserves an opportunity to play in the NFL. He absolutely does. I was not asked whether his sexual orientation should play a part in the evaluation process. It should not."