The NFL doesn’t have the best history of being inclusive of LGBTQ folks. Gay or bisexual NFL players have waited until they were out of the league to address their sexuality and when Michael Sam went public with his sexual orientation, his football career basically ended. Therefore, it’s problematic to hear some NFL teams are grilling potential players on their sexuality, according to former Louisiana State running back Derrius Guice.
On the Sirius XM NFL show Late Hits, Guice, 20, revealed some of the questions he received during the NFL Combine, an annual event where prospective players try out for the pro league. ‘’It was pretty crazy,” he said. “Some people are really trying to get in your head and test your reaction. … I go in one room, and a team will ask me do I like men, just to see my reaction.” Really? Just to see your reaction? How is it beneficial to ask a 20-year-old about their sexual orientation? Furthermore, what if someone said they were gay, what would the result be — would you not be on their team?
Guice also added, “I go in another room, they’ll try to bring up one of my family members or something and tell me, ‘Hey, I heard your mom sells herself. How do you feel about that?’” He also revealed these type of questions are well known to the NFL. “It went exactly how everyone told me it would be. It’s exhausting. … It was a great experience. You’re being watched and tested the whole time.”
The NFL quickly released a statement to Pro Football Talk, “A question such as that is completely inappropriate and wholly contrary to league workplace policies. The NFL and its clubs are committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all employees in a manner that is consistent with our commitment to diversity and inclusion, state and federal laws and the CBA. We are looking into the matter.”
However, OutSports reports a similar incident happened two years ago by an Atlanta Falcons coach. The NFL “did not suspend the coach who asked the offensive and illegal questions, Marquand Manuel. Heck, they even promoted him to defensive coordinator a year later.”
Hopefully, the NFL will not obsess over the sexual orientation of their players and focus on good players — like Colin Kaepernick who still is not playing for an NFL team.