In an interview with ESPN, Carolina Panthers star quarterback Cam Newton said soon to be NFL linebacker Michael Sam, who will be the first openly gay NFL player, would “absolutely” be accepted as a Panther.
According to the Charlotte Observer, Newton who was joined by Colin Kaepernick, said “the objective in the NFL is to win football games, and if Sam can do that, Newton didn’t worry about his private life.”
“His job is a linebacker,” said Newton of Sam, who was the SEC’s co-Defensive Player of the Year at Missouri this past season. “Colin said it best when he said we don’t worry about each other when we’re outside of football. Of course we have, ‘Are you OK? ‘Is there anything I can help you with?’ But the main focus is, we’re football players. We’re here in this organization for one reason and one reason only. And if you’re able to help us attain that winning success, your personal life is your personal life.”
Kaepernick said he didn’t believe it would take more courage for Sam in the locker room than it did to come out publicly as he did a week ago.
“I think when he steps into that locker room everyone’s going to know that he’s there to help us win games,” Kaepernick said. “And that’s why you’re in the NFL — to help us win games. No one cares if you’re black, white, straight, gay, Christian, Jewish, whatever it may be. When you step on that field you’re a member of, in my case the 49ers, or the Carolina Panthers, that’s your job. That’s your occupation.”