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Raiders release Carl Nassib, first active openly gay NFL player

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The Las Vegas Raiders are releasing defensive end Carl Nassib, the NFL’s first openly gay active player, a person with knowledge of the move told USA TODAY Sports’ Mike Jones. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the move is not yet official.

ESPN was the first to report the news.

Nassib, who turns 29 on April 12, came out as gay last June in an Instagram post.

In 2021, his sixth NFL season, he recorded 21 tackles and 1½ sacks in 13 games as a backup to starters Maxx Crosby and Yannick Ngakoue. Later Wednesday, the Raiders agreed to a deal with four-time Pro Bowl pass rusher Chandler Jones, a person with knowledge of the move told USA TODAY Sports. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal is not yet official. The Raiders have also agreed to trade Ngakoue to the Indianapolis Colts, NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported.

Nassib had one year left on his contract and was set to count $9.652 million against the salary cap. Releasing him after June 1 will save the Raiders $8 million against the cap.

Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib (94) watches from the tunnel before playing the Pittsburgh Steelers at Heinz Field.

Nassib signed a three-year, $20.5 million deal in 2020 with the Raiders under then-general manager Mike Mayock, who was fired in January after three years.

Later in January, the Raiders hired coach Josh McDaniels and general manager Dave Ziegler from the New England Patriots to lead a new regime.

Follow USA TODAY Sports’ Michael Middlehurst-Schwartz on Twitter @MikeMSchwartz.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Carl Nassib, NFL’s First Openly Gay Active Player, Eliminated by Raiders

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