Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib made headlines last week after coming out as the first active NFL player to be gay. Many former and current players came in support of Carl Nassib. And one of them was Bills Hall of Famer Bruce Smith who also spoke about his own teammates.
The NFL has had multiple players come out as gay after their NFL careers. Dave Kopay was the first player who came out as gay in 1975, three years after his pro career ended. In total, 16 players including Carl Nassib have come out as members of the LGBTQIA.
View this post on Instagram
But Bruce Smith said that there are more players that were gay during his time in the NFL.
Bruce Smith came out in support of Carl Nassib and said that some of his teammates were also gay.
Hall of Fame defensive end Bruce Smith recently told TMZ.com that the Bills of the 1990s had at least one gay player on the team, and that the rest of the team didn’t care.
“To those of us in NFL locker rooms, this is not necessarily breaking news. We had a gay player in our locker room,” Smith said. “I think it was the mid-to-late-90s and I think we might have had two but that wasn’t what we were focused on.”
“We were focused on winning games and each and every person that was in that locker room contributing to the goal at hand which was winning football games. None of that other stuff mattered,” said Smith. “This was about winning football games and trying to be a good person.”
“That wasn’t what we were focused on. We were focused on winning games…None of that other stuff mattered. This was about winning football games and trying to be a good person.”
— Dan Fetes (@danfetes) June 28, 2021
“I always been a believer in live and let live, and obviously that’s what Carl is trying to do,” Smith said. “Judge me by my character and judge me by the way I treat people. If we show a little bit more love and compassion in the world, this will be a much better place.”
Bruce Smith was with the Bills from 1985 through 1999. And during that time, the Bills went to 4 straight Super Bowls. So obviously, having a gay player on the roster did not affect the team’s chemistry. Hopefully, Carl Nassib will not have to face any prejudice in the NFL as well.