DENVER—In a stunning revelation Friday that sent shockwaves through the NFL, Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning announced during an emotional press conference that he is gay for football.
“For many years I’ve struggled with hiding this secret, but after a great deal of soul-searching, I know it’s time to publicly acknowledge that, yes, I’m gay for football,” said Manning, who wiped away tears while admitting that disclosing his true feelings about the sport provided a huge sense of relief. “Deep down, I always knew that I was gay for football. I think the guys in the locker room suspected that for a long time, too.”
“I am a man who loves football, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of,” added the four-time NFL MVP. “It’s not a choice. I was born this way, and you can’t fight who you are.”
Manning, who told reporters that he first experienced an overwhelming attraction to football when he was 5 years old, said that he felt obliged to conceal his true personal and social identity, fearing that being openly gay for the sport would be humiliating for himself and his family.