Former NFL player Wade Davis has publicly announced he's gay.

Davis played for the Tennessee Titans, the Seattle Seahawks and two NFL Europe teams, the Barcelona Dragons and the Berlin Thunder. His professional football career ended in 2003 when he dislocated his kneecap and tore his patella tendon at a Washington Redskins training camp.

Davis first told his story to gay sports blog He also discussed his experience as a closeted gay man in the NFL with CNN.

The former cornerback now works at the Hetrick-Martin Institute, a non-profit dedicated to serving the needs of gay youth.

“It's the first job since football that I wake up excited for work,” Davis told Outsports. “For these kids, the question isn't whether they are shooting a basketball well, it's whether they have a place to sleep tonight, whether they've eaten today. Sports is less significant than what I see these youth go through every day.”

Davis told CNN that keeping his orientation a secret from his teammates took up “every bit of space” in his head.

“Trying to understand the game of football at an NFL level and then trying to just hide who I was for such a very long time I became a great actor. I should get an Oscar for it, honestly,” he said.

Davis added that he regrets not coming out while in the NFL.

“It would make a difference because youth can actually watch someone on television who's just like them. I wish I had the courage back then to come out,” he said. “If I could do it all over again, I would come out … while I was playing.” (The video is embedded in the right panel of this page. Visit our video library for more videos.)