President Barack Obama congratulated Michael Sam on being the first openly gay player taken in the National Football League draft.

Sam, a 24-year-old All-American defensive end, was picked by the St. Louis Rams in the seventh and final round of this year's draft.

(Related: Michael Sam becomes first openly gay player drafted by NFL.)

“The President congratulates Michael Sam, the Rams and the NFL for taking an important step forward in our Nation's journey,” the White House said in a statement. “From the corporate field to the corporate boardroom, LGBT Americans prove everyday that you should be judged by what you do and not who you are.”

GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said Sam had “redefined what it takes to be a champion.”

“He's tackled stereotypes and joins the ranks of athletic trailblazers like Jason Collins and Brittney Griner in showing Americans that there's no place for homophobia on the field,” Ellis said in a statement. “As support for equality continues to surge, it's clear that sports fans are ready, football is ready, and America is ready for its first openly gay NFL player.”