'The ultimate touchdown': Friends pay tributes to former NFL tight end Tyrone Davis who died at 50

'The ultimate touchdown': Friends pay tributes to former NFL tight end Tyrone Davis who died at 50
Tyrone Davis of the Green Bay Packers snapped at the Super Bowl XXXII at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego, California (Getty Images)

BROOKNEAL, VIRGINIA: Friends of former NFL tight end Tyrone David remembered his greatness after he died on October 2 at age 50.

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Davis was drafted by the Jets in 1995 as a wide receiver fresh out of the University of Virginia, where he set a school record with 28 touchdowns. He reportedly caught 13 touchdowns in his eight-year career with the Jets and Packers. The Jets traded him to the Packers before the 1997 season after converting him to tight end. The acclaimed athlete caught a career-high seven touchdowns in 1998, including Brett Favre’s 200th career TD pass in a 37-3 win over the Giants. He then set a career-high with 20 receptions the following season.

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“This is by far one of the hardest posts to write,” Davis’ older brother, Jeff, wrote on Facebook Monday, October 3. “Last night, the Lord opened up heaven and received my baby brother. This is definitely a tough one for me as this was very unexpected. Tyrone caught many touchdowns in the NCAA and NFL. Last night, he made the ultimate touchdown completion! Take your rest Lil bro. Your race is now complete. Big bro loves you!!” Former Packers offensive tackle Earl Dotson also mourned the loss of his teammate. “This is difficult to post,” Dotson wrote on Facebook. “Rest in paradise teammate. This good man Tyrone Davis fought beside me on the NFL Green Bay Packers for years. Brother forever.”

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Virginia Cavaliers beat writer Jerry Ratcliffe spoke to friends and old teammates of Davis in light of his death. “It was truly shocking when I got a text message from Carl Smith on Monday, that Tyrone had passed away,” former teammate Chris Harrison said, “I hadn’t seen him this season, but was looking forward to seeing him this weekend because we are all getting together to honor James Farrior.” Bill Curry Jr, former teammate and a close pal of Davis', told Ratcliffe, “I saw Ty at his most dominant, impressive, physical prowess, and I saw him at his very lowest, and he made me feel exactly the same both times. As much as he suffered the last few years, that smile never left him. His humanity never left him. His kindness was immeasurable. I miss him terribly.”

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Virginia recruiter Danny Wilmer remembered hunting for the next Herman Moore in the Cavaliers' offense, but there was no turning back once he laid eyes on Davis. “I’ll tell you, he was an imposing figure,” Wilmer said. “If you were on defense, he would put the fear of God in you. He had all the tools you would want for a wide receiver.” Davis would sign with UVA after a year of preparation at Fork Union Military. He did not lose much time before etching his own name in the sport. “Fans expected him to become the next Herman Moore, and that’s what he did,” Wilmer told Ratcliffe.

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19 Sep 1992: UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA WIDE RECEIVER TYRONE DAVIS CARRIES THE FOOTBALL AFTER MAKING A CATCH DURING THE CAVALIERS 55-24 WIN OVER GEORGIA TECH.
19 Sep 1992: university of Virginia wide receiver Tyrone Davis carries the football after making a catch during the Cavaliers' 55-24 win over Georgia Tech (Getty Images)

Davis was eventually slowed down by injuries and the Packers had to let him go before th 2003 season. The football legend is now survived by his mother and four children, namely Maiya Booker, Damien Davis, Jarrett Gomez, and Mariah Gomez. The cause of death was not clear at the time of publication, but he reportedly died from kidney issues.

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