Dennis Hickey wants the best for Michael Sam. He just wanted someone else with his seventh-round pick.
That was how the Dolphins' general manager explained why he passed on Sam, the first openly gay player to enter the draft, eight times this weekend.
Sam was still on the board when they made their final selection, but Hickey instead went with an obscure prospect from a non-football power who played the same position.
Miami selected Terrence Fede instead of Sam, making him the first player ever drafted from Marist.
"Obviously we had Fede rated higher," Hickey explained.
Sam's selection at No. 249 by the Rams, and the nationally televised kiss he shared with boyfriend shortly thereafter, immediately set off a wave of reaction on Twitter. Not all of it was flattering to a Dolphins team quite conscious of its public image after an embarrassing 2013 season.
Second-year defensive back Don Jones tweeted out "omg" immediately after video of the kiss aired. And when someone asked if he was referring to the embrace, he responded: "horrible."
Within minutes, the tweet was taken down. The Dolphins plan to address the matter with Jones in the near future.
"I was disappointed in those comments," Hickey said. "That's not what we stand for as an organization."
It was the second social media snafu in three days for the Dolphins.
On Thursday, Bullygate principle Mike Pouncey welcomed first-round pick Ja'Wuan James with this Twitter message: "Great pick! I can't wait for our gifts he's getting us lol."
Pouncey has since deleted his account.
Other Dolphins players sent out messages of support to Sam Saturday.
Rookie Jarvis Landry, taken in the second round Friday, said: "Congratulations to Michael Sam, for the long waited journey that's about to be yours. #STL #DraftDay"
Added linebacker Jelani Jenkins: "Congrats to Michael Sam."