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Should the San Diego Chargers avoid drafting Michael Sam?

NFL Prospect Michael Sam has come out as gay in the months leading into the draft. Should the San Diego Chargers avoid selecting him to avoid the media coverage? Do they even need a pass-rusher?

Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

In case you missed it over the weekend, Missouri DE Michael Sam has publicly come out as homosexual three months before the 2014 NFL Draft, when he is expected to be selected in the early rounds and will likely become the first publicly gay active NFL player.

Sam earned the award for being this year's SEC Defensive Player of the Year by picking up 11.5 sacks and 31 tackles in 14 games. Despite being undersized for the DE position at the NFL level, Sam is a very good 3-4 OLB prospect and will have plenty of scouts watching him on his Pro Day to see how he backpedals and if he can cover.

San Diego was brought up as a possible destination by some who were talking about where Sam might land, and they referenced how well the Chargers staff and players handled the Manti Te'o situation last year. It's hard not to compare the two situations because the response from fans and media will likely be similar, and it's easy to think that Mike McCoy's Chargers would be well-suited to add a gay player to the team without making a big deal about it.

That leads to the other question, the most important question: Do the Chargers need a pass-rusher? I guess it depends on where Sam ends up,because I don't know that the team should be using it's first round pick on one when they have Melvin Ingram, Jarret Johnson, Tourek Williams, and Dwight Freeney under contract for the 2014 season.

The truth is that you can never have enough pass-rushers, a lesson learned the hard way for Tom Telesco in 2013. Also, Freeney shouldn't be expected to contribute in 2015 and Jarret Johnson's body will likely start to give way soon as well. Sam would be well worth a 2nd or 3rd round selection in this year's draft, and could easily be worked into the rotation and groomed for the starting role in 2015.

I say go for it if he's there. Gay or not, Michael Sam seems like he could help the San Diego Chargers win football games.