NFL free agent announces he’s bisexual – and says ‘truth is survival’
Ryan Russell

"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."


A three-year NFL veteran, now a free agent, says in a revealing and personal 2300 word ESPN interview he is bisexual. Ryan Russell, who played for the Dallas Cowboys for one season and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for two seasons says he just interviewed with an NFL team but he knows that "truth is survival," and he can no longer live his life in separate worlds – a word he uses 16 times.

"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," Russell tells ESPN's Kevin Arnovitz.

"Have I lied to teammates, coaches, trainers, front-office executives and fans about who I am? Not exactly," Russell adds. "But withholding information is a form of deceit. And I want the next part of my career -- and life -- steeped in trust and honesty. During the season you spend more time with your team than with your own family; truth and honesty are the cornerstones of a winning culture."

He adds that he has "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."

"Those two objectives shouldn't be in conflict. But judging from the fact that there isn't a single openly LGBTQ player in the NFL, NBA, Major League Baseball or the NHL, brings me pause. I want to change that -- for me, for other athletes who share these common goals, and for the generations of LGBTQ athletes who will come next."

Russell tells Outsports he "has comfortably settled into the bisexual identity he feels is his true self, as he lives openly for the first time. Now he’s preparing to move in with his boyfriend, Corey O’Brien, as they launch a new YouTube channel together."

And he adds, “I’ve been able to live this genuine existence and hold my boyfriend’s hand in public. For me now, there’s no going back.”

Here's their first video:

Read Russell's story at ESPN and at Outsports.

Image by Mary via Flickr and a CC license