Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib has become the NFL's first active openly gay player.
In a video posted on Instagram Nassib announced that he was gay saying “Just wanted to take a quick moment to say that I'm gay. I've been meaning to do this for a while now but I finally feel comfortable enough to get it off my chest. I really have the best life, the best family, friends and job a guy could ask for. I'm a pretty private person so I hope that you guys know that I'm really not doing this for attention. I just think that representation and visibility are so important. I actually hope that one day videos like this and the whole coming out process are just not necessary, but until then I'm going to do my best to cultivate a culture that's accepting and compassionate.”
Nassib also used the post to raise awareness for the Trevor Project, a suicide prevention service for the LGBTQ community in America, with Nassib saying that he will be donating $100,000 to the Project. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said “The NFL family is proud of Carl for 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.”
Nassib will be entering his sixth season as an NFL player and will be the first openly gay player to play a regular season game in the league, Michael Sam previously confirmed that he was gay before being drafted by the Rams but he never played a regular season game. Former LA Galaxy and United States footballer Robbie Rogers became the first openly gay man to play in a US major sport league after announcing he was gay in February 2013.