Jacksonville Jaguars associate strength coach Kevin Maxsen has become the first male coach in a major U.S.-based professional league to come out as gay.
Maxen opened up about his sexual orientation in an interview published in Outsports on Thursday.
“I don’t want to think I have to think about it anymore,” Maxsen said. “He doesn’t want to feel like he has to lie about who he’s seeing and why he’s living with someone else.
“I want to be a vocal advocate for people to live the way they want, but I also want to just live without fear of how people might react.”
It’s the first time Maxen has announced a male coach, but NFL players have come out before. Michael Sam became the first openly gay player to be drafted by St. Paul’s Cathedral at the time. The Lewis Rams selected him in 2014. In 2021, Carl Nassib, who belonged to the Las Vegas Raiders at the time, became the first active NFL player to come out in public. Nassib played for Tampa Bay last season.
Several female coaches in the U.S.-based league have publicly come out, including former San Francisco 49ers assistant Katie Sowers.
Maxen said she no longer feels comfortable hiding her sexuality or her boyfriend of two years.
“Other coaches have important people, and they’re talking about important people,” Maxsen said. “And I felt guilty that I was letting myself down because I couldn’t do the same.”