Safety William White, who played in the NFL for 11 seasons, died Thursday at the age of 56 after a fight with ALS.
White went to Ohio State and was drafted out of there in 1988. He played his first six seasons in Detroit.
“I loved William,” said Chris Spielman, a former teammate of White’s and an assistant to the president and CEO of the Lions. “We had happy and sad times together on and off the field. He has always been and will always be my brother. Last year’s Pride of the Lions ceremony at Ford Field was a special time because he was there with me. I will always be grateful for that. I can’t wait to see him again once his ALS is gone. May God give his family peace.”
White picked off 20 passes during his career, with a career-high of five for the Lions in 1990. He played for the Kansas City Chiefs for three years and then for the Atlanta Falcons for the last two years.
White’s last season, the Falcons won the NFC title with his help, and he played in Super Bowl XXXIII. White intercepted two of Steve Young’s passes in the fourth quarter of the NFC divisional playoff, which helped the Atlanta Falcons win 20-18 over the San Francisco 49ers.
We share in the sadness felt today throughout the NFL community following the news of William White’s passing. Drafted by the Lions in the 4th round of the 1988 Draft out of Ohio State, White played 6 seasons in Detroit (1988-1993) & appeared in 95 games (79 starts) for the club. pic.twitter.com/v42P1KnbmA
— Detroit Lions (@Lions) July 29, 2022
Kirk Herbstreit, an analyst for ESPN and a former quarterback for Ohio State, also said that White fought his battle with “uncommon valor” in a tweet.
White’s wife, Nikol, and his three children, William Jr., Brendon, and Brea are still alive. Before he moved to Rutgers, Brendon was a safety at Ohio State.
When I heard about his diagnosis years ago I was in shock. He fought it like you’d expect, with uncommon valor. Known his family for many years-my thoughts and prayers to Nikol, their children, and the rest of the White family.
So sorry for your loss. 🙏🏼 https://t.co/Mbsk5Hv16L
— Kirk Herbstreit (@KirkHerbstreit) July 29, 2022
In 2018, White told an independent Ohio State football site called Eleven Warriors that he had no regrets about playing football.
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He said, “It might have something to do with it, but it doesn’t matter.” “If I had known I would get this, I would have kept playing the game because I loved it and it was fun to hit people in the mouth.
White said with a laugh, “I can’t say that now, but hey, that’s why God made sure I was born in 1966 and not 1986.”
Stay tuned for more updates, Nog Magazine.