Michael Sam outplayed by competition for roster spot

Michael Sam, Rams' rookie defensive end and the first openly gay player ever drafted into the NFL, watched unheralded fellow rookie and roster spot competitor Ethan Westbrooks have another big outing at defensive end in the first half.

Sam, a seventh-round draft pick from Missouri, had an uneventful first half as a member of the kickoff and punt return teams. He played defensively in the second half. In the fourth quarter, he sacked Packers quarterback Matt Flynn for a 10-yard loss on a third-and-19 play from St. Louis 21-yard line. Sam beat the offensive tackle cleanly from his left end position.

But Westbrooks, an undrafted free agent, played with the second team in the opening half and had another productive game.

On consecutive plays in the second quarter, the 6-4, 267-pound Westbrooks made tackles on running plays for gains of zero and two yards. Late in the second quarter, Westbrooks sacked Packers' backup quarterback Scott Tolzien for a one-yard loss. Westbrooks also played solidly in the second half.

Sam and Westbrooks likely are competing for the last of nine defensive line spots with the Rams. Sam was officially credited with two tackles. Westbrooks made three of his four tackles in the first half.


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