Defensive end Carl Nassib, the NFL’s first openly gay active player, was released by the Las Vegas Raiders on Wednesday, according to a report on the NFL’s website.
Nassib had 49 tackles, four quarterback sacks and one interception in two seasons with the Raiders, who will save $8 million over two years with the move to NFL salary cap rules.
Nassib, 28, said he was gay in an Instagram post last June.
“I just wanted to take a little moment to say I’m gay,” Nassib posted last year. “I’ve wanted to do this for a while now, but I finally feel comfortable doing it. I really have the best life, the best family, the best friends and the best job that a guy could ask for.”
NFL commissioner Roger Goodell was among those who expressed support for trailblazer Nassib.
“The NFL family is proud of Carl for courageously sharing his truth today,” Goodell said last June in a statement.
The move allows Nassib to sign with any club, although it will likely be for less than the $7.75 million base salary he had with the Raiders.
Mike Mayock, who signed Nassib, was fired in January as the Raiders signed new general manager Dave Ziegler and new coach Josh McDaniels after a first-round exit from the NFL playoffs, their first post-season appearance since 2016.
Nassib played six seasons in the NFL, starting with the Cleveland Browns, who selected him in the third round of the 2016 draft.
He played two years for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before joining the Raiders in 2020.
Michael Sam was the first openly gay player selected in the NFL Draft, led by the former St. Louis Rams in 2014. Sam played preseason games for the Rams and was briefly on the team Dallas Cowboys practice but never entered a regular season contest.
Sam played one game in 2015 with the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League before retiring.