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Carl Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

Las Vegas Raiders lineman Carl Nassib is the first active player in NFL history to come out as gay.
/ Source: TODAY

Carl Nassib made history Monday when he announced Monday that he is gay.

The Las Vegas Raiders lineman posted a selfie-style video to Instagram, alongside a carousel of statements.

"What's up my people," Nassib began the video. "I’m at my house in West Chester Pennsylvania. I 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 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, 28, continued, "I'm a pretty private person, so I hope 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 not necessary, but until then I will do my best and my part to cultivate a culture that’s accepting and compassionate and I’m going to start by donating $100,000 to the Trevor Project. They’re an incredible organization, they’re the number one suicide-prevention service for LGBTQ youth in America and they’re truly doing incredible things. I’m very excited to be a part of it and help in any way that I can and I’m really pumped to see what the future holds.”

Tampa Bay Buccaneers v Carolina Panthers
Carl Nassib, then playing for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, looks up during the second half of a game against the Carolina Panthers on Sept. 12, 2019 in Charlotte, North Carolina.Jacob Kupferman / Getty Images

In secondary slides, Nassib credited family and friends for their support, as well as the NFL, coaches, and fellow players.

"I would not have been able to do this without them," he wrote. "From the jump, I was greeted with the utmost respect and acceptance."

The post drew immediate support from his Raiders family, with the organization commenting three black hearts, a nod to the team's colors.

Later, the official Raiders Instagram account shared Nassib's statement again, captioning the post with "Proud of you, @carlnassib 🖤."

Nassib graduated from Penn State University and is entering his sixth NFL season, his second with the Raiders organization.

In a statement, James Franklin, the head coach of Penn State's football team, wrote that he was proud of Nassib for living his truth.

"Carl's brave announcement will forge a path for others to be true to their authentic self," Franklin said, in part. "I was proud of you when you led the nation in sacks, but I'm even more proud of you now."