Will an Active NFL Player Come Out of the Closet in the Next Few Months?


Please don't be a kicker, please don't be a kicker, please don't be a kicker...
My innner 12-year old hopes that he was a tight end but is now a wide receiver.
I wonder if he is a Bear.
I want a hockey player to come out first.
If 58% of people support gay marriage in this country now, I don't think an out football player is going to bother the vast majority of fans. It will probably go a long way in shattering stereotypes of gay people that some have.
Coming out is as an active NFL player is a big thing, especially for the player, to be sure, and I guess it shouldn't be done simply for publicity's sake, but if I were a different gay player, I'd hold a press conference tomorrow at the latest and come out.

Everyone remembers Jackie Robinson, after all. Who remembers Larry Doby (who I had to find on Wikipedia)?

Plus, once one guy comes out, others will. If one player comes out before opening day, there will be more than one active player by the time the season starts in the fall.
Larry Doby was the first black player in the American League, but I'm a baseball nerd.
Finally - Rodgers!!

Apparently less so than you, but I'm kind of one, too. And even worse, I had actually looked this up sometime in the last five years and learned of Doby then, but had to find him again today. (On the plus side, I knew about Monte Irvin. . .)
Please let it be Tebow... Please let it be Tebow... Please let it be Tebow... Please let it be Tebow... Please let it be Tebow...
@6 - If a hockey player comes out first, I hope he's not on the Predators!

(old Norm MacDonald joke)
@11 Larry Doby is on a postage stamp issued this year, so he's got that going for him. He was also the second black manager in MLB, coincidentally.

I'd be really, really shocked by this. Would expect any of the other major sports before football, who's players are already subject and vulnerable to all sorts of violent cheap shots. Stories I've read and heard about the goings-on in the scramble for a fumble, or even just any random play on the line of scrimmage would have me concerned, probably more so than would the behavior of some asshole fans.

On the other hand, yeah, it'd be pretty great.

I really need to start buying postage stamps again so I can help save the USPS.
@15: On the other, other hand, the NFL seems to be the sport that values merit over anything else more than the others. It's the one where "can he play?" would be the relevant question from most of the players/staff. Baseball with all it's various traditions and related crap would seem to me to be the most dangerous place to come out professionally. If not for the Canadian influence on hockey or the generally left of normal sports fans perception of soccer in the US specifically, I'd have assumed we'd get an out NFLer first.
@7 : Sure, won't bother a majority of fans. But say you're the Ayer in question, and it's a road game. So you've got 50,000 fans of the opposing team. Lets say your orientation only bothers 20,000 of them (about the amount opposed to gay marriage). And maybe only 10% of those are frothing at the mouth bigots. And maybe 10% of *those* are unhinged enough to do something violent, maybe after drinking. So in your 8 away games a year, you're exposed to 1,600 potentially violent nut jobs. Would you maybe think twice? I would. I'd like to think I'd have the courage to come out anyway, but it would be a thought.
Gays and anyone perceived as gay already are targeted by bigots. The tough part for most is stepping out of the closet.
I would expect the gaying up of the NFL to start elsewhere, as kids inceasingly come out in middle school - years before they emerge as five-star athletes. Competitive major college programs will break rules to recruit them like any other 5-star prospects, and 2 or 3 years later they'll be high on NFL draft boards ... and giving Mr. Commissioner and Mr. Team Owner the traditional bear hugs on national TV on draft day.
Nice bit from former NFL player Wade Davis about coming out
Coming out in general is pretty difficult for many of us. I can't imagine how hard it must be to decide to come out if you are in some high-profile position.

I can only think back on my time in the military. I had come out to close friends and family, but never had the courage to come out publicly at work. I could have been arrested, jailed, and discharged at the time (mid-1980s). Not the same risk as the NFL. A gay football player doesn't risk jail time, but it could potentially dramatically effect his football career. Not something to take lightly.
@4, @12, it can't be Tebow. Tebow *has* no career.
on a global basis, soccer fans are by far the most homophobic. no contest.
@24, I think you're right on that one. It's not curling, that's for sure.
Couldn't be Tebow anyway. He's a Jesus freak as is his family. So, homophobic fans wouldn't be his "true concern" nor would they be the only thing preventing his self-exposure.

My guess is that it's going to be a player without much of a name. Can you imagine someone like, say, Romo coming out and saying, "Yeah, it's true. I likes me some mens"?

Whoever it is, he may not be a bench warmer, but he won't be a star either.