Sad day for the New England Patriots.
ESPN and the team are confirming the Saturday night death of former Patriots defensive lineman Ron Brace. He was 29. The investigation into his passing is ongoing, although the cause isn't suspicious at this time, according to Springfield Police captain Robert Strzempek's comments to MassLive.com.
Brace, who stood 6-foot-3 and 330 pounds, started seven times in 39 total NFL games with the Patriots from 2009-2012. Although he inked a deal with Washington in 2013, he didn't play a regular-season game with the team.
"We were deeply saddened to hear the news this morning of Ron Brace's death," the Patriots said in a statement to ESPN on Sunday. "Seven years ago tomorrow, we drafted Ron after his standout career at Boston College. During his Patriots career, the Springfield native was always eager to volunteer and give back in our communities, especially when those community initiatives were held in Western Mass.
"It is difficult to believe that someone so young and in the prime of his life is no longer with us," the statement continued. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to Ron's family, friends and the many former teammates who will mourn Ron's passing."
Al Washington, Boston College's special teams coordinator/defensive line coach who also played on the squad's defensive line with Brace, took to his Twitter account for this emotional post.
He even posted this tribute video of his friend and former college football teammate.
Rest in peace, Ron Brace.
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(Photo: Jim Rogash/Getty Images)