OWN has decided to postpone filming of its reality series on Michael Sam, the first openly gay NFL player, just days after his new prospective St. Louis Rams teammates expressed concern about the project.
“After careful consideration and discussion with the St. Louis Rams, ‘The Untitled Michael Sam Project’ has been postponed, allowing Michael the best opportunity to achieve his dream of making the team,” OWN President Erik Logan said in a statement.
“OWN is about elevating and empowering people to achieve their best. It’s clear that we, along with the world, recognize the important opportunity that Michael now has in this moment,” Logan added. “We will continue to support him in his journey to earn a spot playing for the Rams.”
The decision was reached after a meeting between the network and the Rams organization Friday. Sam’s agent, Cameron Weiss, said postponing the project would be good for the player’s stated goal of focusing on his athletic prospects.
“After today’s meeting with the Rams, we collectively feel it is best to postpone the project,” Weiss said. “This will allow for Michael to have a total focus on football, and will ensure no distractions to his teammates. Everybody involved remains committed to this project and understands its historical importance as well as its positive message.”