Prominent NFL offensive player Andrew Luck, has spoken out to say that, if it makes a teammate happy to come out as gay, “they should do it”, and that he has no problem with it.

Speaking to CNN via theindychannel.com, Luck, an Indianapolis Colts player, said: “My first reaction is really good for him.”

He said: “I hope if someone’s thinking about [coming out], that if they do come out as gay and it makes them happy and it makes their life easier, then I think they should do it,”

“It’s the 21st century, and I know I would have absolutely no problem with it. I hope no one would treat him any differently than any straight player, no special treatment — he’s just another guy.”

The issue of gay players coming out in a major US professional team sport is particularly prominent at the moment as In April NBA star Jason Collins confirmed he is gay in an article to Sports Illustrated magazine. He said: “I’m a 34-year-old NBA center. I’m black. And I’m gay.”

Openly gay LA Galaxy football player Robbie Rogers, sent a message of hope to gay athletes who may be hesitating to come out, as he said “it will not hurt your career”.

On Sunday, the former Leeds United player made his historic debut in Major League Soccer, playing for LA Galaxy, who won against the Seattle Sounders 4-0.

Last week, a former teammate of NFL player and equal marriage advocate Chris Kluwe, Adrian Peterson, spoke out to say that he does not support equal marriage, despite having gay relatives.

Kluwe recently announced that he had been dropped by the Minnesota Vikings, saying that “making people aware of an issue that is causing children to commit suicide is more important than kicking a leather ball.” Some reports suggested his equal rights advocacy was the reason he was dropped.

According to an ESPN poll of NFL players last year, 38.5% said they did not think the US should legalise equal marriage, with 61.5% for allowing same-sex couples marriage equality.