On Monday, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib became the first active NFL player to announce he is gay. Nassib made the announcement on Instagram, saying “I’ve been meaning to do this for a while now, but I finally feel comfortable enough to get it off my chest.”
Raiders owner Mark Davis told ESPN’s Paul Gutierrez after Nassib’s announcement: “It’s 2021. All the more power to Carl. It doesn’t change my opinion of him as a person or as a Raider.”
Shortly after, players and teams from around sports began to chime in with their support of Nassib. Reaction ranged from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to Jason Collins, who became the NBA’s first openly gay player in 2014.
— Julian Edelman (@Edelman11) June 21, 2021
From Commissioner Goodell: pic.twitter.com/MbgGt6AuGs
— NFL345 (@NFL345) June 21, 2021
Proud of you, Carl 🖤 pic.twitter.com/R9aJxYFefW
— Las Vegas Raiders (@Raiders) June 21, 2021
Much respect brudda ✊🏾 https://t.co/1G2ewVOWje
— Saquon Barkley (@saquon) June 21, 2021
Very proud of Carl Nassib! Incredibly happy for him and can’t wait to watch him play this upcoming season! 👏🏾🙌🏾 https://t.co/kFaTF2EIcR
— Jason Collins (@jasoncollins98) June 21, 2021
Congrats to Carl Nassib on coming out that’s a big step, I think that most players are concerned if you can play or not.
— Shawne Merriman (@shawnemerriman) June 21, 2021
Proud to support Carl and his decision to come out as the first active gay player in the NFL. I hope other sports executives will join me in publicly expressing their support as well! 🏳️🌈 https://t.co/sgiJMccDSE
— Brian Burke (@Burkie2020) June 21, 2021
The @NFL is not changing; LGBTQ+ athletes are a part of every sport and always have been. The only thing changing is the amount of love, acceptance, and comfortability we feel every day just being ourselves and being supported by our teammates, coaches, and the game’s fans.
— R.K. Russell (@RKRelentless) June 21, 2021
Respect My Guy 🤞🏽 https://t.co/KGtOXi3gHd
— Tae Davis (@Tae_Davis1) June 21, 2021
The ability to live an authentic life is so important.
Representation and visibility matter! 🏳️🌈 https://t.co/E6hSOeIioW
— Billie Jean King (@BillieJeanKing) June 21, 2021
some things are bigger than a rivalry 💙 https://t.co/cO8rHtVxip
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) June 21, 2021
Representation matters. Thank you Carl Nassib for your incredible courage. https://t.co/uOVRdLD3dc
— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) June 21, 2021
Really proud of Carl Nassib. The first active football player to ever do so. I played with several guys who never were comfortable enough to go public. They were great teammates, & obviously very talented.
— Warren Moon (@WMoon1) June 22, 2021
— James Franklin (@coachjfranklin) June 22, 2021