Gay NFL players need to come out and cash in
The NFL is officially conducting what I like to call “gay watch” or trying to smoke out potential gay players, because of the possible distraction they will have with the media attention attached to them. The media are pounding the drums for the first openly gay player in the NFL or any male professional sport for that matter and the NFL is taking note of it. That’s why it wasn’t surprising that some of the combine interviews with players like tight end Nick Kasa or Le’veon Bell included questions like “Do you like girls?” instead of actual questions about football. I could care less if a football player is gay or not. My only concern is if the guy can play football as most players on teams would and should care about.
That’s why I’m tired of hearing people say “where is the Jackie Robinson of gay people?” because while I understand the similarity in discrimination. You can’t go around and point out the gay football players. It was obvious that African-American baseball players and other professional sport players could play at a high level. However the first openly gay football player in the NFL isn’t a guarantee to be as good of a player as Jackie Robinson was in baseball. Imagine if Robinson was terrible at baseball? That would have just reinforced the stereotype that African-Americans don’t belong in the MLB.
Matter of fact; the first openly gay football player may not be a great player. The most recent former NFL player that revealed his sexual orientation after he retired from the NFL is Wade Davis. How many of you were lining up to buy Wade Davis jerseys when he was in the league? The point is that if you’re a current gay football player who doesn’t have the talent to make a lot of money in the NFL, then why don’t you come out? Here is what I guarantee will happen.
The media will descend upon the practice field. You’ll be the most wanted interviewee in the United States and even the world to a certain extent. They’ll pay for your travel. You’ll get to see other parts of the world with only one drawback. You’ll have to endure some pain and humiliation from gay backlash and of course your own family if they are homophobic, but the end game is to write a book about your memoirs. Get a ghost writer to make it good, and the book will sell enough copies to make you more money than you would have been expected to make in the NFL as a player alone.
And the rewards are even higher if you’re a good player in the NFL, because you’ll sell more books. Your chances of being cut will go down, because of the media hounding the team to keep you on. There is not a lot of ways that you will lose in this deal. It will be the hardest decision of your life to come out in the NFL as an openly gay football player, but who cares at this point. It’s going to happen eventually, and the first player to do it will reap a lot of rewards.
Will you get death threats, hate mail, and other crazy reactions to your sexual orientation? Yes, but the rewards of accepting who you are and cashing in are so much higher. Make history already. It’s insane to think that this is still an issue in a league that helped to breakdown the color barrier, and it’s high time to breakdown the rainbow barrier too. You can’t change who you are, but who you are can add some change to your pocket.