The defensive lineman for the Raiders took a day's leave following the media storm around head coach Jon Gruden's anti-LGBTQ+ and racist messages to colleagues.
The Raiders happen to be the team of Carl Nassib, the first active NFL player to come out as gay.
"This was the week for the LGBTQ+ community to feel seen and to feel valued and respected. And it was a really beautiful thing to see.”
The Raiders player forced a key turnover in overtime, and put to rest questions about gay athletes in professional sports in the process.
“I was definitely surprised by the big reaction. It was incredible. I thought nobody would care.”
The NFL’s first-ever out active player has become the MVP of merch.