Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Dwayne Haskins died on Saturday morning after being struck by a dump truck while walking on the side of a highway in Florida. Reacting to his death, former Dallas Cowboys executive Gil Brandt said the athlete “was living to be dead, so to speak.” His remarks sparked outrage, with people calling them “disgraceful.” Following the backlash, the 90-year-old issued an apology.
“This morning while learning of Dwayne Haskins’ passing, I reacted carelessly and insensitively on a radio interview. I want to apologize to Mr. Haskins’ family and anyone who heard my poor choice of words. I truly apologize. My heart goes out to his family at this difficult time,” he tweeted.
Also Read: Los Angeles Rams sign former Giants punter Riley Dixon
The 24-year-old was in Florida training with his teammates, including running back Najee Harris and tight end Pat Freiermuth, for the next NFL season when he was killed. A graduate of Ohio State University, Haskins played for the Washington Commanders in 2019 and 2020 before being signed on by Pittsburgh Steeler last year.
Speaking to Vic Carucci and Dan Leberfeld of Sirius XM NFL Radio, Brandt said, “I hate anytime anybody is killed or anybody dies. But he was a guy that was living to be dead.”
‘They told him don’t, under any circumstances, leave school early. You just don’t have the work habits. You don’t have this, you don’t have that. What did he do? Left school early.”
Also Read: NFL assures ‘diverse, free’ workplace for women after investigation threat
Members of the football community criticised him heavily for his remarks.
“I do not know or will assume to but please don’t speak on my friend. He will be missed and your words are disgraceful. We are all hurting right now,” Haskins’ Steelers teammate Cam Heyward tweeted.
Darron Lee, former player for the New York Jets, wrote, “Remove Gil Brandt from the Hall of Fame. That’s inexcusable.”