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Penn State Football Great Carl Nassib Becomes First Active NFL Player To Come Out As Gay

Through a video posted Monday, former Penn State football star defensive end Carl Nassib became the first active NFL player to come out as gay.

Nassib, who currently plays for the Las Vegas Raiders, went public with the news via his Instagram account. Along with his announcement, he will donate $100,000 to The Trevor Project, a suicide prevention organization for LGBTQA+ youth.

“I just wanted to take a quick moment to say that I’m gay,” Nassib said. “I’ve been meaning to do this for a while now, but I finally feel comfortable enough to get it off my chest…I hope you guys know I’m really not doing this for attention, I just think that representation and visibility are so important.

“I hope one day that videos like this and the whole coming out process are just not necessary. But until then, I will do my best and my part to cultivate a culture that’s accepting and compassionate.”

Nassib’s announcement comes in the final days of Pride Month, in which folks have supported and celebrated the LGBTQA+ community, including in State College.

Now entering his sixth season of professional football, Nassib was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in the third round of the 2016 NFL Draft. He spent two seasons in Cleveland, two with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and just finished up his first campaign with the Las Vegas Raiders. Nassib has totaled 20.5 career sacks in the NFL so far.

The West Chester, Pennsylvania native is a defensive legend for the Nittany Lions and is widely considered one of the top walk-on run-on players to ever don the blue and white. He set the single-season sack record in 2015 with an absurd 15.5 and even forced six fumbles during his historic campaign.

Former St. Louis Ram Michael Sam made history by coming out as gay before he was picked in the 2014 NFL Draft. Sam was cut before the regular season, making Nassib the first NFL player still playing today to come out.

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About the Author

Will Pegler

Will is a senior majoring in digital and print journalism and is an associate editor for Onward State. He is from Darien, Connecticut and is a lifelong Penn State football fan. He loves a good 80's comedy movie, Peaky Blinders, The Office, and the New York Yankees and Giants. You can catch some of his ridiculous sports takes on his Twitter @gritdude and yell at him on his email [email protected]

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