Carl Nassib Becomes NFL’s First Openly Gay Active Player
On June 21, Las Vegas Raiders defensive lineman Carl Nassib made NFL history, becoming the first active player to announce he is gay. Nassib made his announcement via Instagram.
“What’s up people, I’m at my house in West Chester, Pennsylvania. I just wanted to take a quick moment to say that I’m gay,” Nassib said. “I’ve been meaning to do this for a while now but finally feel comfortable getting it off my chest. I really have the best life, the best family, friends and job a guy can ask for.”
Nassib also said that he intends to donate $100,000 to The Trevor Project, an organization working to prevent suicide among LGBTQ+ youth.
NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell, commented on Nassib’s surprising revelation in a statement. “The NFL family is proud of Carl courageously sharing his truth today. Representation matters. We share his hope that someday soon statements like his will no longer be newsworthy as we march toward full equality for the LGBTQ+ community.”
From Commissioner Goodell: pic.twitter.com/MbgGt6AuGs
— NFL345 (@NFL345) June 21, 2021
Several players have previously announced they are gay after the conclusion of their career. Michael Sam, a former Missouri defensive lineman, became the first openly gay player selected in the NFL draft but never made the regular-season roster. Jason Collins is another notable athlete, as he became the first active openly gay NBA player.
“I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black. And I’m gay,” Collins said to Sports Illustrated. “I didn’t set out to be the first openly gay athlete playing in a major American team sport. But since I am, I’m happy to start the conversation.”
Nassib has recorded 20.5 sacks during his five-year stint in the NFL after being selected in the third round of the 2016 NFL Draft.