On the heels of drafting the first openly gay NFL player, Michael Sam, the league is already making it known to players that homophobia will not be tolerated.
ESPN reports that Miami Dolphins defensive back Don Jones was fined an undisclosed amount on Sunday for “inappropriate and unacceptable” tweets in reaction to Sam being selected by the St. Louis Rams as the 249th overall pick on Saturday. In addition, he has been suspended from team activities until he completes mandatory educational training for his comments.
“OMG” and “horrible” Jones wrote in tweets that have since been deleted.
“We were disappointed to read Don’s tweets,” Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin said in a statement. “They were inappropriate and unacceptable, and we regret the negative impact these comments had on such an important weekend for the NFL. We met with Don today about respect, discrimination and judgment. These comments are not consistent with the values and standards of our program.”
Jones publicly apologized on Sunday, and expressed regret that his tweets may have tainted Sam’s “draft moment.”
“I want to apologize to Michael Sam for the inappropriate comments that I made last night on social media,” Jones said in a statement. “I take full responsibility for them and I regret that these tweets took away from his draft moment. I remember last year when I was drafted in the seventh round and all of the emotions and happiness I felt when I received the call that gave me an opportunity to play for an NFL team and I wish him all the best in his NFL career.”