After being cut by the St. Louis Rams and released from the Dallas Cowboys’ practice squad last season without playing a regular-season game in the NFL, former Mizzou star Michael Sam will try to make it in the Canadian Football League with Montreal.
Sam signed a contract Friday with the Alouettes, who held Sam’s rights in the CFL. According to Pro Football Talk, Sam agreed to a two-year deal that, unless terminated by Montreal, will keep him out of the NFL until 2017 because of the league’s collective bargaining agreement.
Montreal general manager Jim Popp told Pro Football Talk that the Alouettes have been interested in signing Sam, a defensive end, since last year.
“He can really turn and bend the corner,” Popp told the site. “He’s just a classic tweener that excels in the CFL as a rush end.”
After winning the Southeastern Conference defensive player of the year award and unanimous All-America honors for the Tigers in 2013, Sam announced he was gay. He was selected in the seventh round by the Rams in the 2014 NFL Draft, becoming the openly gay player to be drafted by a NFL team. Sam played in preseason games but didn’t make the final round of roster cuts before the regular season.
The Cowboys signed Sam to their practice squad, but he did not see the field before being released in October.
This year, Sam participated in the NFL’s veteran scouting combine. But now he’s headed to Canada to restart his pro football career. Sam will be introduced at a news conference Tuesday in Montreal.