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Michael Sam's Ex-Teammate HE BELONGS IN THE NFL

12/4/2014 12:10 PM PST

Michael Sam's Ex-Teammate -- HE BELONGS IN THE NFL

Michael Sam's former college teammate -- who's played with NFL stars like Aldon Smith and Sheldon Richardson -- says Sam is RIGHT ... his sexual orientation is the reason he's not in the league. 

We spoke with Marvin Foster -- who played alongside Sam at Missouri -- and says Sam is one of the best players he's ever stepped on the field with. 

"There's no way the Defensive Player of the Year in the SEC should be a free agent," Foster said.  

TMZ Sports posted footage Wednesday showing Sam very strongly suggesting that he has the talent to play in the NFL -- but isn't on a roster because he's openly gay.

"The kid can play and I think he showed he can play,"  Foster added ... "He had three sacks in the pre-season. I don't know why they cut him." 

But not everyone shares Foster's opinion -- we spoke with an active NFL lineman who tells us, "If Sam was killing he would be on a roster."

The NFL player adds, "He can make an excuse if he wants to ... but that's silly. If you're good, you're good. The NFL teams don't feel that he is." Watch TMZ Sports on FS1 Get the new TMZ Sports app!


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