Gay NFL Player Carl Nassib Makes History

Nassib becomes the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Happy Pride!

Every week seems to bring with it some “historic” new coming out—”The first former Olympic bronze medallist in dressage to come out as a brunette!”—so you’d be forgiven for hearing that Carl Nassib’s announcement June 21 was a big deal and scrolling right past it.

But Carl Nassib’s very casual announcement June 21, that he is a gay man, is a big deal.

Nassib isn’t a former NFL player—he is still very active as defensive linebacker on the Las Vegas Raiders. Which makes him the first openly gay player to be a part of the NFL and not be cowed by the sport’s reluctance to embrace social change.

Nassib made the announcement via an Instagram post, adding that he has donated $100,000 to The Trevor Project.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Carl Nassib (@carlnassib)

The NFL’s social media team team promptly chimed in to show themselves on the right side of history, tweeting

Of course, it probably helps the NFL jumping on board that Nassib is white.

How all of this will play out with the fans and the other NFL members remains to be seen but since this is 2021, we’re betting that Nassib is in for a round of social media viciousness and probably more than a few homophobic remarks on and off the field.

But he’s also a generically attractive professional athlete, so I imagine his DMs will be about 90 percent thirst and 10 percent abuse. And honestly, that’s a ratio most of us would love!

1 Comment

  1. You are absolutely right. Of course, congrats to Carl on coming out but I have a feeling he did a LOT of leg work before that announcement. I am cynical enough to suspect that (1) he got the team front office involved in this before coming out (2) he also informed the NFL organization’s front office of his potential announcement as not to blindside them and leave them in a “caught unawares situation”. He had smart, expert people around him to plan this as to make everyone come out of it smelling like a rose, especially the Raiders and the NFL. What could be better than that? . If what I suspect is true, then kudos to him for accomplishing such a worthy feat.

    I suspect that he will get some nasty blowback but not much. With Roger, the league office and the team’s front office seemingly on his side, it sends the message that any nasty words will be frowned upon and other players are, and will be, taking notes of that. They will know to keep their negative comments to themselves as not to go against the NFL and its outreach to the LBGT+ community. Finally, it really helps that he’s white and good-looking. Just saying…

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