Former NFL Star Dies Suddenly At 28


The sports world was shaken Friday morning by the sudden passing of former New York Giants offensive lineman Korey Cunningham, who was found dead at his home in Clifton, New Jersey.

He was 28.

The Giants organization expressed their deep sadness on X, stating, “We are saddened to hear of the passing of Korey Cunningham. He was a vital part of the spirit and camaraderie of the locker room. Our thoughts are with Korey’s family, friends and teammates.”

Clifton police said they responded to Cunningham’s home around 1:15 p.m. Thursday after a family member reported losing contact with him, according to NBC News. After forcing entry, officers “found him deceased” a spokesperson said.

The investigation into his death is ongoing, with no cause of death immediately disclosed.

Cunningham, a native of Alabama, had a promising start to his NFL career after being drafted in the seventh round by the Arizona Cardinals in 2018 out of the University of Cincinnati. He was known for his strength and character both on and off the field, standing 6-foot-6 and weighing 311 pounds. Despite facing challenges with foot injuries that ultimately hindered his playing time, Cunningham remained a positive and influential figure in the league.

After his time with the Cardinals, he joined the New England Patriots and then the Giants, where he was warmly received. His former teammate, Justin Pugh, reflected on Cunningham’s unique role within the team, noting, “We would invite him to the OL dinner every week even though he wasn’t on the team, which doesn’t happen… ever. Team dinners are for players on the team only. Except for Korey… solely because he was beloved by all the guys regardless if you knew him or not.”

Tributes poured in from teammates and fans alike, painting a picture of a man who was much more than an athlete. Saquon Barkley, former Giants running back, revealed his shock and sadness online, emphasizing the close-knit nature of their relationship.

As the NFL community comes to terms with this loss, many are reminded of the pressures and unseen struggles faced by athletes. Cunningham’s death has prompted a wider discussion on the support systems available to professional players, particularly focusing on mental health and wellness.

Cunningham is survived by his family and a community of teammates and fans who will remember him for his infectious smile and generous spirit.

Las Vegas News Magazine

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