Former New York Giants running back Derrick Ward, a member of the team’s Super Bowl championship team in 2007, slammed ESPN for showing Michael Sam kissing his boyfriend after he became the first openly gay player drafted by an NFL team.
Ward, who retired from the Houston Texans in 2012, said the sports network’s decision to run footage of the kiss after the St. Louis Rams selected Sam on Saturday set a bad example for children.
“Man U got little kids lookin at the draft,” Ward griped on Twitter Saturday. “I can’t believe ESPN even allowed that to happen.”
Man U got little kids lookin at the draft. I can't believe ESPN even allowed that to happen.
— Derrick Ward (@derrickward32) May 10, 2014
Sam broke down in tears when the Rams made him the 249th overall pick in the draft. Like many drafted players do, Sam celebrated by kissing his significant other — Vito Cammisano.
Ward sparked outrage with his tweet. But he didn’t back down.
“Everyone who comments on my page saying what dude did was fine is getting blocked,” Ward tweeted. “So far I’ve blocked 10 people.”
He went on to tweet that putting “your tongue into the other person’s mouth is a little overboard. But people seen that as oh i’m bashing him because he’s gay. Who cares!!!”
The paring your tongue into the other persons mouth is a little over board. But people seen that as oh I'm bashing him because he's gay. Who
— Derrick Ward (@derrickward32) May 11, 2014
At least Ward won't have to whip out his checkbook like Miami Dolphins player Don Jones who also expressed his disdain for Sam’s on-air smooch by calling it "horrible."
Jones was fined an undisclosed amount by the Dolphins for his thoughts.