Why former Patriot Ryan O’Callaghan participated in the Aaron Hernandez documentary

The offensive lineman came out as gay in 2017.

ORCHARD PARK, NY - OCTOBER 22:  Offensive lineman Ryan O'Callaghan #68 of the New England Patriots blocks against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on October 22, 2006 in Orchard Park, New York. The Patriots defeated the Bills 28-6.  (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
Former Patriot Ryan O'Callaghan (68) participated in the new Netflix docuseries on Aaron Hernandez. –George Gojkovich / Getty Images

Ryan O’Callaghan never played football with Aaron Hernandez. He never knew him personally. But the former offensive lineman, who was with the Patriots from 2006-08, decided to participate when he was asked to help out with Netflix’s new docuseries “Killer Inside: The Mind of Aaron Hernandez”, which was released to the streaming platform Wednesday.

The series discusses Hernandez’s sexuality at length and features his high school quarterback, Dennis Sansoucie, who claims to have had a sexual relationship with Hernandez in high school. O’Callaghan, who came out as gay in 2017, told OutSports he was hesitant to participate, but wanted to provide the perspective of a formerly closeted football player.

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“Obiously, being gay doesn’t make you want to kill someone,” O’Callaghan said. “But covering your tracks could lead you to do some really weird things if you think the consequences of being out are that bad.

“One person can only handle so much. I was already in a bad head space. To add all of those extra things to worry about it, I don’t know what it would’ve done to me. I know it wouldn’t have been good.”

O’Callaghan told OutSports he felt Netflix presented the issue with “respect.”

“I didn’t know Aaron, but I was happy to give the perspective that I did,” O’Callaghan said. “As far as the feedback I’ve gotten so far, I think it’s resonated with people.”