The Pittsburgh Steelers announced that wide receivers coach Darryl Drake, 62, died suddenly on Sunday morning.
The team did not disclose a cause of death, however, the Steelers officially canceled their training camp practice on Sunday, and it’s uncertain whether they will practice Monday.
“We are at a loss for words following Darryl Drake’s passing this morning. Darryl had such an impact on the players he coached and everyone he worked with throughout his entire career. He was a passionate coach and had a tremendous spirit toward life, his family, his faith and the game of football,” Steelers president Art Rooney II said in a statement.
“Our prayers and thoughts are with his wife, Sheila, his three daughters, his grandchildren and entire family during this difficult time.
Darryl Drake was starting his second season as the wide receivers coach for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Drake’s coaching career spanned close to four decades. He started as a Western Kentucky graduate assistant in 1983 before working his way into the NFL. He was an assistant coach for 16 years in the NFL, also serving as wide receivers coach for the Chicago Bears and Arizona Cardinals while most notably working with Larry Fitzgerald, Antonio Brown, and Juju Smith-Schuster. His former teams expressed their condolences on the team’s Twitter pages.
“Today we mourn the untimely passing of Pittsburgh Steelers wide receivers coach Darryl Drake. Darryl was the former Bears wide receivers coach under Lovie Smith from 2004-12, including the 2006 Super Bowl appearance.”
Arizona Cardinals @AZ Cardinals:
“Our hearts go out to the family and loved ones of Darryl Drake. It is impossible to overstate his impact on the game in nearly four decades as a coach in college and the NFL.”
We here at 64 The Hurricane send our deepest condolences and prayers to Darryl Dixon and his family.