Nassib’s strip-sack helps Raiders in OT victory over Ravens

Sep 13, 2021, 11:17 AM | Updated: Sep 14, 2021, 9:55 am
Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib (94) forces a fumble by Baltimore Ravens quarterback La...

Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib (94) forces a fumble by Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) during overtime in an NFL football game, Monday, Sept. 13, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/David Becker)

(AP Photo/David Becker)

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib described the electric atmosphere inside a frenzied Allegiant Stadium with one word: “Bananas.”

But of the 61,756 rabid fans in attendance for “Monday Night Football,” one just happened to be a non-football fan. Andrew Erazos, a 60-year-old server at a local steakhouse, is a Carl Nassib fan.

And when Nassib came out publicly as gay on Instagram in June, Erazos was moved so much that he bought Nassib’s No. 94 jersey and couldn’t wait to attend a game.

Erazos got more than he bargained for with a wild conclusion to Week 1 of the NFL season, as Nassib’s strip-sack of Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson came at a critical time in overtime and helped the Raiders to a 33-27 victory.

“That’s amazing, that’s a great story, I love that. I wish I could’ve seen (him),” Nassib said. “It was really special, I’m really happy that we got the win on the day that kind of made a little bit of history, which is like really nice to do.”

History as in the first regular-season NFL game with an openly gay player on the field. Nassib, who is in his second season with the Raiders, is the first active NFL player to come out as gay.

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay once their careers were over. Former University of Missouri defensive star Michael Sam was the first openly gay player ever selected in the NFL draft, when he was taken in the seventh round by the Rams in 2014. But he never made the final roster and retired in 2015 having never played in an NFL regular-season game.

Nassib finished with three tackles, including the key sack that helped the Raiders earn their third consecutive season-opening win.

“It was awesome, Carl works super hard,” Las Vegas defensive end Maxx Crosby said. “You see that. It’s the biggest play of the game. He comes out, gets a strip-sack, that’s what we talk about all the time. We’re super proud of him. Carl’s a baller and I’m proud of the guy.”

With Baltimore facing third-and-7, Nassib sacked Jackson, causing a fumble that was recovered by defensive tackle Darius Philon, and gave the ball to the Raiders at the Ravens 27-yard line.

“I should have had two hands on the ball and could have taken a sack,” Jackson said. “It happens.”

Three plays later, Las Vegas quarterback Derek Carr dropped back and floated a pass to a wide-open Zay Jones, who caught the ball and waltzed in for a walk-off win.

“Our defense made a signature play at the end of that game,” Raiders coach Jon Gruden said. “They love football, they play for each other. We were down 14-0 to the Ravens and it didn’t look pretty, it didn’t look good. But when you can come back and find a way to win against a team like that, that’s saying something. That’s an impressive victory.”

Said Nassib: “I’ve played in a lot of games, now this is my sixth year, I try to make sure I really remember every single game. I won’t forget this one.”

___

More AP NFL coverage: https://apnews.com/hub/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Rasmus Sandin (38) looks for a rebound as Washington Capitals defens...
Associated Press

Rielly scores first goal of season, Leafs down Capitals 5-1

TORONTO (AP) — Morgan Rielly scored his first goal of the season for Toronto in the Maple Leafs’ 5-1 victory over the Washington Capitals on Sunday. Michael Bunting, with a goal and an assist, William Nylander, Pierre Engvall and Zach Aston-Reese provided the rest of the offense for Toronto. Ilya Samsonov made 23 saves in […]
17 hours ago
Carolina Hurricanes' Sebastian Aho (20) celebrates with teammate Seth Jarvis (24) after scoring dur...
Associated Press

Aho scores again, Hurricanes beat Bruins 4-1

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Sebastian Aho scored a goal for the fourth straight game and the Carolina Hurricanes beat the Boston Bruins 4-1 on Sunday in a matchup of the teams with the two best records in the NHL. Paul Stastny scored on a second-period power play, Seth Jarvis posted a goal in the third, […]
17 hours ago
FILE - Denver Broncos head coach Vic Fangio looks on during an NFL football game against the Kansas...
Associated Press

AP source: Dolphins hire Vic Fangio as defensive coordinator

The Miami Dolphins have reached a deal with former Denver Broncos coach Vic Fangio to become their defensive coordinator, a person familiar with the hire told The Associated Press on Sunday. The person spoke to The AP on condition of anonymity because the deal has not been finalized. Fangio, who had been one of the […]
17 hours ago
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Josh Johnson (17) passes while being tackled by Philadelphia Eagles...
Associated Press

Brock Purdy, 49ers ousted by Eagles in NFC title game

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Brock Purdy’s magical run from being the last pick in the NFL draft to winning his first seven starts for the San Francisco 49ers ended when Haason Reddick knocked him out in the first quarter of the NFC championship game. Purdy was forced to return in the second half despite an elbow […]
17 hours ago
Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh (74) talks with San Francisco 49ers offensive ta...
Associated Press

Hurts, Eagles soar into Super Bowl, rout 49ers for NFC title

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Jalen Hurts had one of Philadelphia’s four rushing touchdowns and the Eagles soared into the Super Bowl, forcing both of San Francisco’s quarterbacks out of the game with injuries and beating the wounded 49ers 31-7 in the NFC championship game on Sunday. The Eagles, who won the Super Bowl five years ago […]
17 hours ago
Tomoki Hiwatashi performs during the men's free skate at the U.S. figure skating championships in S...
Associated Press

Ilia Malinin wins 1st U.S. men’s skating title, Brown 2nd

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — As the cameras flashed in front of the medal-winners in U.S. men’s figure skating, one photographer had a request: “Ilia, for one, look happy.” At that, Ilia Malinin chuckled and a grin flashed across his face, but he quickly returned to the close-lipped smile he’d been wearing since he was […]
17 hours ago
Nassib’s strip-sack helps Raiders in OT victory over Ravens