This NFL player just came out as bisexual.
Free agent defensive end Ryan Russell opened up about his sexuality in a first-person essay for ESPN. He was a 5th-round pick for the Dallas Cowboys in 2015. He also spent two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
In an ESPN essay Russell said he was tired of playing football while in the closet and wanted teams to know “who I truly am.”
“My truth is that I’m a talented football player, a damn good writer, a loving son, an overbearing brother a caring friend, a loyal lover and a bisexual man,” he said. “Today I have two goals: returning to the NFL, and living my life openly. I want to live my dream of playing the game I’ve worked my whole life to play, and being open about the person I’ve always been.”
Russell says he came forward not only to be true to himself, but to blaze a trail for other LGBTQ+ athletes who might follow. He also described how keeping his orientation a secret began to weigh on him and affect his professional career.
As of August 30, he still remains an NFL free agent. His best season came in when he recorded 17 tackles and two sacks for Tampa Bay.