Carl Nassib, 1st Active NFL Player To Come Out, Announces Retirement

Defensive end Carl Nassib at post-game press conference after making game-changing tackle leading to Las Vegas Raiders victory
Carl Nassib (screen capture)

Carl Nassib, who in 2021 became the first active player in the NFL to come out as gay, has announced his retirement from football after seven seasons.


“This is a bittersweet moment for me, but after seven seasons and just over 100 NFL games, I am officially retiring from football to focus on my company Rayze,” Nassib wrote on Instagram. “It really feels like just yesterday starting out as a walk-on at Penn State. Football has given me more than I ever could have imagined. I can truly hang up my helmet for the last time, knowing I gave it everything I had.”

“Growing up, I loved how fun football was. I loved the pursuit of perfection. I loved the small window where every player has to chase their dreams. It makes it all the more exciting if you get there. It was always my dream to play in the NFL, even as a walk-on, and I really feel like the luckiest guy on the planet.”

Nassib’s NFL career began in 2016 as a third-round draft pick by the Cleveland Browns. He then spent two years with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before signing with the Las Vegas Raiders in 2020. He rejoined the Bucs last year playing in 13 games.

According to, Nassib brings his pro football career to a close with 25.5 sacks, 59 QB hits, 187 tackles, four forced fumbles and an interception.