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NFL's Carl Nassib Says Coming Out Was Tough But Rewarding

Carl Nassib Saying Coming Out Was Tough, But Rewarding

In a recent interview, the out and proud pro football player described being the first out NFL player as "f*ck*ng cool."

Carl Nassib, the first out gay active player in the NFL said he felt lucky that his coming out had such an impact on the LGBTQ+ community.

In an interview with Mickey Rapkin of Men's Health, the blunt and notoriously foul-mouthed linebacker for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers spoke openly about coming out, but also about life as a professional football player who wants to make an impact on and off the field.

"I felt really lucky that I could be on a big stage and, like, make a good play while representing the community," Nassib told Rapkin in the exclusive interview. "To be the first out player in a game and then to win. That's sick, that's f*ck*ng cool."

Carl Nassib Saying Coming Out Was Tough, But Rewarding

Nassib came out in a video posted to Instagram last year in time for Pride Month.

"What's up people," Nassib said in the Instagram video last June. "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 used the opportunity to donate $100,000 to The Trevor Project, which provides support and advocacy for LGBTQ+ youth at risk for death by suicide.

The 29-year-old Pennsylvania native described coming out as a nerve-wracking experience, but well worth the effort.

"When I came out," Nassib revealed to Rapkin, "it was like, this is gonna f*ck*ng suck. Because all anyone's gonna remember about me is that I'm gay."

Nassib quickly dispelled those fears in his first game after coming out. Nassib forced a fumble in overtime which was quickly turned into the game-winning touchdown, He couldn't have picked a better moment to make an impact, as the Raiders beat the Baltimore Ravens 33-27 in overtime during the 2020 season opener of Monday Night Football last September, the NFL's premier primetime game.

"Lot of firsts today," Nassib said at the post-game press conference. "No one blinked. It was awesome. It was a great team win, for sure."

Despite the media attention surrounding his sexuality, Nassib made clear to Rapkin that while he may be living out and proud as a gay man, his identity on game day is purely professional.

"I go out with the same mentality every game, just trying to beat the sh*t out of the team across from me," Nassib said. "My whole thing is, I'm a football player who is gay,"

And that is not an easy task. Nassib said he is "not a naturally built guy" like many players in the league and hasn't taken a vacation in ten years because he can't afford to miss a week of workouts.

"I can't take my foot off the gas."

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