Carl Nassib of the Raiders on coming out as gay: “I didn’t know if it would ruin my career”

Las Vegas Raiders defensive lineman Carl Nassib became the first active player in league history to declare himself gay in June.

In a recent “Comeback Stories” interview with Darren Waller and Donny Starkins, Nassib said he feared his coming out could ruin his NFL career.

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Carl Nassib of the Las Vegas Raiders flexes during warm-ups before a game against the Denver Broncos at Allegiant Stadium on November 15, 2020 in Las Vegas. The Raiders defeated the Broncos 37-12. (Photo by Ethan Miller / Getty Images)
(Getty)

“I thought about it every now and then. I thought about how I wanted to do it. When I could do it,” Nassib said on the show. “I didn’t know how people would react. I wanted to make sure I was financially stable before I did. I didn’t know if it would ruin my career. I didn’t know if the guys would support me or not.”

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Nassib said he realized he was gay four years ago and didn’t want to come out right away because he was more focused on his career and establishing himself in the league. Nassib felt it was his responsibility to go out and make him sociable acceptable in the locker room.

Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after a game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta.  Nassib became the first active NFL player to declare himself gay.

Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after a game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib became the first active NFL player to declare himself gay.
(AP Photo / John Bazemore, file)

“When I decided to go out, it wasn’t easy,” Nassib said. “Personally, for my life, I didn’t want to do it. But I felt a huge obligation to my community, to all the young children who struggle with their sexuality. If I could help a few of them, then I would. could sleep better at night. “

Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib before a game against the Miami Dolphins at Allegiant Stadium.

Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib before a game against the Miami Dolphins at Allegiant Stadium.
(Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

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Nassib, a Penn State product, is in his sixth season in the NFL and his second with the Raiders. He also spent time with the Cleveland Browns and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Before Nassib, no openly gay or bisexual player had previously played a regular season in the NFL. Michael Sam was openly gay when he was drafted from the University of Missouri in 2014. But Sam never made a place in the league.

About Larry Struck

Larry Struck

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