Who Died In The NFL?

Find out which NFL players have died while playing the sport. We’ve compiled a list of every player who has died due to injuries sustained on the field.


Since the National Football League’s inception in 1920,990 NFL players have died, according to research by Dr. Frederick O. Mueller of the University of North Carolina and published in the Journal of Athletic Training. Although most of these deaths were due to natural causes, there have been many deaths due to on-field injuries and other causes.

Deaths by Position

Apart from the physical nature of the sport, there are other dangers associated with playing in the NFL. These dangers can include things like head injuries, which can lead to long-term health problems or even death in some cases.

So far this year, there have been four deaths in the NFL. Three of those deaths were due to head injuries, and one was due to a heart condition.

The following is a breakdown of the deaths by position:

Quarterbacks: 1
Running backs: 1
Linebackers: 1
Defensive backs: 1

Most Common Injuries that Lead to Death

There are many dangers inherent in playing football at any level, but some players are more susceptible to injuries that can lead to death than others. The most common injuries that lead to death in football are traumatic head and neck injuries, including concussions and spine injuries.

In recent years, there has been an increased focus on the long-term effects of concussions and other head injuries, and how they can lead to chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). CTE is a degenerative brain disease that can cause memory loss, confusion,impaired judgment, and aggression. It has been found in the brains of former football players who have died by suicide, and is believed to be the reason why many former NFL players have been diagnosed with dementia.

Spine injuries are also a leading cause of death in football players. Injuries to the neck or back can cause paralysis or even death if they sever the spinal cord. These types of injuries often occur when players are tackled from behind or hit while their heads are down.

Other less common causes of death in football players include heat stroke, heart conditions, and sickle cell trait. Heat stroke occurs when the body’s temperature rises to 104 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, and can be caused by wearing unsuitable equipment or being overexposed to the sun. Heart conditions can be congenital or develop over time, and can be exacerbated by the physical exertion required to play football. Sickle cell trait is a condition that affects red blood cells, and can cause organ damage and death if not properly managed.

How have Deaths in the NFL Changed over Time?

The National Football League has seen a dramatic increase in the number of player deaths over the past few decades. In fact, according to a recent study, the NFL now has the highest rate of death among professional athletes.

So what has changed?

There are a few possible explanations. First, it’s important to note that the NFL is now a much bigger and more popular league than it was in the past. There are many more players, and they are under a lot more pressure to perform. This could lead to more dangerous situations on the field.

second explanation is that medical science has improved dramatically over the past few decades. This means that players who would have died in the past are now able to survive thanks to advances in medical treatment. However, it’s also important to note that this improvement in medical science means that players who suffer serious injuries are also more likely to die than they would have in the past.

Finally, it’s possible that the recent increase in player deaths is simply due to chance. With more players in the league, there is simply a greater chance that one of them will die each year.

Whatever the cause, the increase in player deaths is certainly a cause for concern for the NFL and its fans. Let’s hope that this trend does not continue in the years to come.


To date, there have been a total of 176 deaths among NFL players. Of those, 113 were from natural causes, such as heart attacks and cancer. Suicide was the second leading cause of death, with 28 player deaths. Traumatic injury was the third leading cause of death, accounting for 18 player deaths.

Similar Posts