NFL Hall Of Famer Dead at 48
23 May, 2017
Cortez Kennedy, an icon with the Seattle Seahawks who was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2012, has died at age 48, the Orlando (Florida) Police Department said Tuesday.
Orlando police confirmed to ESPN that they are investigating the former defensive tackle’s death but said “there is nothing suspicious to report” at this time.
Kennedy died alone, according to police.
Kennedy was a force inside, both as a run-stopper and in threatening quarterbacks. The 1992 Defensive Player of the Year made eight Pro Bowls, had 58 sacks — an unusually high total for a tackle — and spent his entire 11-season career with Seattle, starting 153 out of 167 games.
Named to the Associated Press 1990s All-Decade team, Kennedy was credited with 448 tackles, six forced fumbles, five fumble recoveries and three interceptions during his NFL career.
“Tez was the heart and soul of the Seahawks through the 1990s and endeared himself to [fans] all across the Pacific Northwest as a player who played with a selfless and relentless approach to the game,” the team said in a statement.
“Tez was an NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Pro Football Hall of Famer, and Seahawks ambassador, but more than his on-field accomplishments, he was a loyal son, father, teammate and friend to many, possessing a larger-than-life personality and an infectious laugh. … We are proud to have been represented by such a special person.”
Kennedy retired in 2000, was named to the Seahawks Ring of Honor and had his No. 96 retired by the team.
“Cortez will be remembered not only for all his great achievements on the football field but how he handled himself off the field,” Pro Football Hall of Fame CEO David Baker said in a statement. “He epitomized the many great values this game teaches which serves as inspiration to millions of fans.”
The third overall pick in the 1990 NFL draft was an All-American at the University of Miami and was on the Hurricanes’ 1989 national championship team. Kennedy also was inducted into the Miami Hurricanes Ring of Honor and the university’s Hall of Fame.
Jimmy Johnson, who coached Kennedy at Miami, said he was “shocked” by Kennedy’s death.
Image Seattle Times Twitter
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